If you have been following the world smartphone trends, it’s obvious that Dual-cameras are a thing now. From the new iPhone 8 Plus, the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 and most other flagships spot a Dual-camera system. But do they really matter?
Before I can answer that question, I need to talk about one more flagship, Google Pixel 2. It was released last week and lacks a dual-camera. But that didn’t stop it from being declared the best camera ever on a smartphone by DxOMark – independent camera experts. The Note 8 and the iPhone 8 are tied on second place with a score of 94 points.
iPhone 8 Plus and Galaxy Note 8 Dual-Camera Setup
Dual-camera system can improve the quality of a photo depending on how manufacturers implement it. For Samsung and Apple, they have almost a similar setup at the back – A wide-angle lens and a telephoto lens. A telephoto lens is for zooming close to the subject while a wide-angle lens gives a wide range of view in your photos.
This gives you more choices when using either an iPhone 8 plus or a Galaxy Note 8 compared to using a Google Pixel. You can zoom on a photo using the telephoto lens or take a wide-angle photo using the other lens. In fact, the two smartphones take both photos simultaneously and you can decide which to keep later. This outlines the true benefits of dual-cameras.
Huawei Mate 9 Dual-Camera Setup
There are instances where dual-cameras can be used to enhance the quality of the picture taken. For instances, the Huawei Mate 9 uses a standard color camera and a monochrome sensor. The monochrome sensor captures grayscale images without any color. It then combines data from both the sensors to come up with a picture with better contrast and less noise. The Huawei Mate 8 had a score of 85 last year, which was extremely good considering the highest was Google Pixel with 89 points.
For a smartphone or any camera to produce excellent photos, it all comes down to good camera hardware and good software combination. Google uses its advantage in machine learning to improve the photos taken and therefor beat its competitors. That said, a dual-camera system where you have a combination of a telephoto lens and wide-angle lens is extremely helpful.
While Machine learning gives Google Pixel the edge, there are some instances where it’s beaten by other cameras with a dual-cameras like zoom where a telephoto lens comes in handy. The difference in camera quality between the three flagships is not much. I would chose a dual-camera smartphone for one simple reason: Software can be improved after you have purchased your device, the same cannot be said about hardware.
So, to answer the question, do they really matter? Yes!