Android Just Got Serious About Smartphone Photography

In this March 27, 2014 file photo, an employee shows Samsung's Galaxy S5 smartphone at a mobile phone shop in Seoul, South Korea. Samsung’s new Galaxy S5 smartphone is more durable than last year’s model and other leading Android phones, but the iPhone 5s outperformed all of them in part because of its smaller size, a new study finds. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man, File)
 In this March 27, 2014 file photo, an employee shows Samsung's Galaxy S5 smartphone at a mobile phone shop in Seoul, South Korea. Samsung’s new Galaxy S5 smartphone is more durable than last year’s model and other leading Android phones, but the iPhone 5s outperformed all of them in part because of its smaller size, a new study finds. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man, File)
In this March 27, 2014 file photo, an employee shows Samsung’s Galaxy S5 smartphone at a mobile phone shop in Seoul, South Korea. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man, File)

 

(Reviewed.com) – The iPhone is routinely cited as the smartphone with the best camera, but lately it’s come under serious threat from Android and Windows Phone devices. In fact, our own lab testing has concluded that an Android phone, theSony Xperia Z3, currently has the best camera on the market.

But that’s not the only reason Android is gaining ground when it comes to “smartphonetography.” As image quality from these pocketable cameras continues to improve, experienced photographers will demand better editing tools. And with Android 5.0 Lollipop, Google has given Android photography an even bigger edge over the iPhone—RAW support.

If you don’t know JPEG from RAW, here’s the lowdown: RAW photos capture the pure data coming from each individual pixel, while JPEGs compress that data (essentially averaging it) to create smaller, more easily shareable files. The upshot is that RAW files can be manipulated far more aggressively in your editing program of choice.

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