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Verizon Droid vs. iPhone 3GS Side-by-Side Camera Showdown

The 5 megapixel, dual LED flash Verizon/Motorola Droid camera beats the iPhone 3GS 3 megapixels on specs alone, right? Not according to the Chicago Sun/Times' technology columnist, Andy Ihnatko, who put some side-by-side comparison shots up on Flickr.

Ihnatko also seems to share many of my opinions about the Droid's dubious introduction commercial, though he writes it out ever so much better. About the camera specifically, he says:

does the Droid actually take better pictures than the iPhone? Overall, no. Over the past few days I’ve shot lots of scenes with both phones and the iPhone consistently produced prettier images. Where software inside the Droid is easily bamboozled by uncooperative lighting, the iPhone’s camera app almost always finds a workable and attractive solution.

Droid Day in November 6th. Android Central has one in the house, and Casey's already crowing about it, so stay tuned for more!

Rene Ritchie
Contributor

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

40 Comments
  • Yeh to be honest, i thought the iphone had better turn outs on pictures than the droid. Two very nice phones tho!
  • So the palm pre still takes the best pics...beside the focus.
  • Of course, higher megapixels doesn't necessarily mean better photos. Unfortunately, 99% (my guess) of the general public thinks it does, and doesn't ever research this.
    For that simple reason, Apple needs to upgrade the camera - to convince unknowing consumers that it meets the Industry standard of others (even if, in reality, it may already surpass it).
    It's all about perception.
  • First!
  • It's basically a software problem on android 2.0 which Isnt a big deal because there's like 2-3 better camera apps on the android market right now and someone already confirmed that the Droid takes better pictures when you install a market app.
    So what's the summary on this story? The built in camera app kinda blows right now, just download a better one
    Also it's interesting to note people are also chiming in about the same thing with the virtual keyboard on the droid as well, just download a better keyboard app and you're good to go
    ps. Socialism is awesome
  • Firstttt 1st!!!!!!
  • The only Android ohonento tickle my interest is the HTC Hero. Too bad Sprint sucks more than a prostitute on a good night.
  • Technically I AM the first.
  • Phone is what I meant to say....
  • Yea but the droid can multitask.
  • iphone pics look way better
  • software or not, more megapixels doesnt mean better pictures period. Its a photo size not quality
  • Is it me or is verizon being a little too sneaky with their ads.
    Tom - so can the iPhone. It's an Apple software limitatation only with third party apps. Have you ever went to the iPod app on the iPhone, started a playlist and then switched over to email or any other app. Amazingly, the music continues to play. Yes, the iPhone is capable of multitasking.
  • @Kyle And the iPhone can do simultaneous voice and data -- you can take a call, surf the web, and send an email all at the same time. Verizon, being EVDO Rev. A can't do that. You take a call, your data connection goes dead.
  • Pandora while web browsing -> droid win
  • Id love to see Apple bump up the screen to 640x840 (just double resolution, shouldnt hurt apps too much to scale up) 5mp camera, and give 3rd party devs the API to multitask like the Apple apps can.
    Shut those iDont critics up REAL fast. But of course the anti-fanboys would always find something to harp on. The king of the mountain is always the first target
  • @Steve
    3 min jailbreak and backgrounder and it does too. Not jailbreaking is becoming a poor excuse for anyone posting on this or any tech blog since its become so streamlined and one button basically.
  • Rene has fallen victim to off-topic bait! ;)
  • @ Kyke & Renee
    I think everybody already knows that Verizon can't do simultaneous voice and data...just saying. but when you talk about multi-tasking, we also all know that youre refeering to native iphone apps.
    also, these pics can easily be enhanced...and as someone whos uses iphoto on my mac. i can take a picyure of some apples, enhance the photo and boost some color before uploading them on the web.
    no to say the iphone doesn't take good photos and not that 3mp compared to 5mp means anything, bc the technically inclined would no that mp only means something to an extent.
    either way...theyre both great phones.
  • iPhone ftw again :)
  • klmsu19
    "The king of the mountain is always the first target"
    Good point. Windows is definitely the king of the mountain.
  • Yea the pictures are "prettier" but not for a good reason imo the iphone just washes out detail and makes it seem better but if you do anything with photoshop a 5mp pic will go alot further than 1.3 psh and you could easily take the droid pics and adjust the light level and get the same results.
  • @Tom: Windows? King of the hill? Really? You mean the mobile OS that is on several phones across all carriers in all countries and should be number one in market share by virtue of strength in numbers, but is currently last despite their numbers advantage? Really? Because a product that is literally EVERYWHERE, yet people look past them to go with a SINGLE device on a very limited number of carriers across a limited distribution of countries ... Is a perfect picture of failure. WinMo is the mobile OS the masses really don't care about. HTC still produces WinMo because of license agreements with Microsoft. I am willing to bet, then they will soon start producing mainly Android phones and ditch winmo eventually. You only have to look at the market to see WinMo is failing. Anyone that thinks they are on top is fooling themselves.
  • @ steve
    I'm doing that right now..... Pandora and typing you up a crow salad on my iPhone. Who needs droid?? Try using your sling box on a droid. Can't do it. There must be a droid forum to go running back to. JK..Lol
  • @Evan
    I thought the Pre was dead already. Please - no one it talking about the Pre anymore. Sorry, buddy.
  • Does droid have Snapture?
  • Relax chris cox. I wasn't talking about winmo. Look at the quote.
  • @kimsu19.....YOU have proved the problem with your FAILED answer. Why should I HAVE to do that just to make this thing do what other phones can do out the box?? You idiots keep keep putting the focus on what this brick does not do with your blind rants. I am tired of hearing "Well, all you have to do is this....." to make it work. I expect my TV do be a TV, I expect my frige to keep my food cold WITHOUT me having to modify it, and I want a phone that does as advertised without me having to jailbrake it.
  • Pre ? What's that.
    People are silly thinking there going to get better pics from 5 megapixel.
  • There is a way to adjust the brightness by tapping on the dark part if the screen. Most of the iPhone images came out dark because he just point and shot
  • andriod sucks and so does verizon. Them idiots raised early termination fees. Sprint please recover please...
  • @BigPimpin
    wah wah wah. If youre too ignorant or scared to unlock the devices power then dont do it, your loss. But complain elsewhere.
    The old "It should do what I want it to" argument is old. WM has ROMs, BB has leaked OSs, Android rooting, and we have jailbreak! Nothing does what EVERYONE wants out of the box, so accept that and either get more function of sit here and cry more about it.
  • *or sit
    MAN the whiners are out today. Nothing is perfect out of the box OS-wise. Deal with it or dont, simple as that. There's a reason people correct WM bugs/problems by installing custom ROMs, BB same thing with leaked beta OSs, and we jailbreak!
    If youre not going to help yourself then it sucks to be you I guess, and live with what you have and be stubborn
  • Let's stay on topic people.... This blog is about cameras lol. But here's my perspective.
    Droid's 5mp camera with a screen a screen tad bit larger than the iPhone.
    COMPARED
    iPhone 3GS 3Mp camera with A "few"better pixels in the screen resloution.
    I love the iPhone but COME ON????????? The droid wins
    Don't even ge me started on the satistics on hardware issues lol...
  • O YEAH I FORGOT TO MENTION THE DROID HIGH RELU FLASH WITH CAN BE USED AS A FLASH LIGHT AND BRIGHTEN UP THE PICTURE!!!!! no apple their isn't an app for that....
  • No slingplayer on any droid!!!!
    "These are not the droids you are looking for"
  • I think all you people are morons for being guided like sheep to buy either the iphone or droid. You'll do whatever advertising tells you to do.
  • Droid/Shmoid. I'm buying one - as the Apple doesn't fall too far from the tree.
  • Nice post.My brother loves his Motorola Droid.I think it is really giving the iPhone a run for the money.Either way I'll have to stay with my sidekick until a gsm carrier picks up the Milestone (or ill just take out a loan to get one lol)
  • My new
    Droid does NOT take 5 megapixel photos. At least, nobody at Verizon can tell me why all its images are only 640 x 480 -- which comes to only .3 megapixels, a third of one megapixels.
    My Olympus 3.1 megapixel camera takes 1536 x 2028.
    Anybody out there able to take a higher resolution image with their Droid than 640 x 480?