HTC said to be working on optical zoom lenses for 2015

htc one m8 featured large camera

HTC has been taking a lot of flak for the cameras they’ve been sticking on their flagship devices. The HTC UltraPixel sensor from yesteryear is sufficient for most ordinary needs, though there is an eventual ceiling in terms of quality up against sensors inside phones like the iPhone 5S or the Samsung Galaxy S5.

But they could be looking to change that next year. Vodafone informant Symon Whitehorn apparently let slip that HTC is closest to the advances the mobile industry needs for smartphones to be able to outdo high-end point-and-shoot cameras, and even approach DSLR-like capabilities.

He said in order for any of that to happen we’d need to see some form of optical zoom, noting that we should be on the lookout for something from HTC within the next 12-18 months.

Not lost on us is the fact that there are phones with optical zoom lenses out there, such as the Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom and the upcoming Samsung Galaxy K. The difference is those phones add quite a bit of girth to add those capabilities — we imagine Vodafone’s insight into HTC’s plans hint toward that being possible in a more traditional, slim form factor.

Either way, it’s something HTC’s going to have to do if they want to change the public opinion that has grown about their imaging capabilities with the apparent lack of a vertical jump in their latest offering.

[via Vodafone]

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  • worldclassflame

    Yup, their biggest mistake was to stick with that darn 4 mp shooter, ok an otherwise nearly flawless device

    • CiDhed

      They are right in not focusing on the MP war. It’s a silly spec game and the camera on the phone takes pretty good pictures for digital consumption, especially in low light situations. If you are worried about cropping or printing images, you should be using an actual dslr. The Canon EOS-1D still takes better pictures than ANY smartphone out there and it is only 4mp.

      • William D.

        I say the same about my oldish Rebel XTi- I’d stack it against most 16MP+ phones and point-and-shoots any day. My Nikon L320 rivals it, but that’s ordinarily one step below a DSLR anyway.

      • blest

        This response is tired. There’s phones that take better all around pics without low light and that’s where htc needs to be.

        • CiDhed

          The complaining about it is tired too. Everyone that I know that has an M7 is very happy with how the pictures turn out. It makes a great point and shoot camera for internet consumption. Low light on other phones like the S4(I haven’t played with S5 yet) takes adjusting and multiple attempts to get to work properly. The M7/M8 don’t need this, it just works, even with the flash off.

          Nobody is forcing you to buy the phone. Most people are content with the camera quality that aren’t spec nerds though. It takes a consistently good picture.

          • blest

            Nah the complaining will get HTCs attention and maybe they can make both parties happy. Your complacency and enabling will lead to them sticking with it.

            =P

        • worldclassflame

          THIS ^

      • MITM

        Im not into photography or anything but I saw some pics taken with that Canon EOS and they were absolutely beautiful

        • CiDhed

          Which is my point exactly, I’ve had DSLRs since they’ve come out. Phone cameras don’t even come close no matter how many mp they have. I’d rather have a consistent 4mp camera from my phone than one I have to adjust settings for or take multiple pictures because the lighting isn’t perfect. 4mp is perfect for internet consumption. You can also print 9×12 without noticing it with 4mp.

    • malcmilli

      the biggest mistake was image quality issues not the pixel size.

    • Tony Chiang

      https://m.flickr.com/#/photos/tetjk/sets/72157643152349865/

      Taken with the M8. I don’t know what others think but those are some fantastic shots for a 4mp shooter

    • No_Nickname90

      I never get a straight answer as to why people don’t like the camera. I mean, the only difference I ever see in image quality is lighting. It shows better in low light.

      This “bad quality” or “low resolution” stuff doesn’t make any sense to me. I’ve never seen this. The GS1, GS2, M7, and M8 all look the same when I took pictures. The only difference I’ve ever seen was when the lighting was low, which is what I think OEM’s should focus on.

      Hmm…

  • Carl Rood

    There’s no way a phone lens can approach DSLR capabilities. This is a case where size really does matter. Bigger lenses=more light.

    • burgosma

      bigger sensor = more light, the lens determines image quality.

  • Cael
  • JSYOUNG571

    Just confirmation that HTC knew their camera on their flagship phone sucked big time and bothered to do nothing about it but drill another whole at the top of the phone and put an extra lens in it.

  • Chimphappyhour

    I think there’s been optical zoom cameras on cellphones even before the Samsungs. Nothing new.

  • Bill Latronica

    I was really worried about the low pixel count too, but I bought the phone anyways. Once I discovered the full manual control, I fell in love with it! I just went to this concert 2 days ago and shot all these pictures on my M8.

    http://www.latronica.us/Photography/Switchfoot/