4 smartphones that do a great job at taking selfies
Like it or not, the trend of selfies is here to stay. Everybody wants to click a picture of every event of their lives, even if it is just a regular lunch out with friends, and share it with the world.
As a result, the front camera, which first came as a feature only on the high-end phones, has now found a place for itself on almost all phones. From a basic VGA (640x480) to the advanced 5-8 megapixel cameras with wide angle lenses, phone manufacturers understand the need of the hour, and are making these changes.
Though there are several phones to choose from and argue which is the best — not taking in account the iPhone and the line up of phones from Sony or Samsung —here is a run down of a few phones that do a great job at taking selfies.
HTC DESIRE 820: (Rs 24,990)
The big boy of the selfie phones club is the brand new, curvy Desire 820, featuring a 5.5-inch IPS screen with a resolution of 1280x720 pixels. The Desire 820 runs on a Octa Core Architecture, on a Snapdragon 615 that is supported by 2 Gigabytes of RAM and comes with 16GB of Storage Space, which can be expanded using a microSD Card.
The phone also has a dual sim capability. From the selfie point of view, the 820 features an 8-megapixel front-facing camera, which captures some interesting pictures on a bright sunny day but leaves you wanting for more in the evening. There are quirky settings in the Selfie application that comes preinstalled on HTC phones, that lets you play with features like face morph, face fusion as well as make a collage out of your 4 Photo Booth images, while smoothing out your skin in each image and making you look good. On the rearside is a 13-megapixel camera, that can shoot a full high-definition video, supported by an LED Flash.
LAVA IRIS X5: (Rs 8,799)
A 5-inch display with the same resolution as the Lumia 730 at 1280x720 pixels, the Iris X5 features an IPS LCD. It runs on a 1.2-GHz Quad Core processor, and supports Dual Sims. There is also 1 Gigabyte of RAM for the Phone to work on and 8 Gigabytes of storage. You can expand the storage using a microSD card, but the maximum you can use in the X5 is a 32 Gigabyte card.
The selfie camera, as Lava likes to call it, or the front-facing camera is a 5-megapixel camera with a BSI Sensor and an aperture of f/2.2, which allows you to get better shots in the evening and just in case you are somewhere that is pitch dark and still want a selfie, the Iris X5 features a front camera flash too. Lava claims its front-camera lens has a coverage of 84 degrees allowing you to grab more in a scene. The phone also features an 8-Megapixel rear camera, with a Dual LED flash to ensure you get good pictures in the dark. You can shoot Full High Definition movies with the X5 too. What makes you think twice about the phone is that is available only in white, and has a limited talk time. In the test, we got only between four to six hours, so you need to have a charger available all the time.
GIONEE ELIFE E7 MINI: (Rs 18,999)
The E7 Mini is the oldest phone in the line up, but requires a special mention, due to a rotating camera. The Mini comes with a 4.7-inch display, which has the same resolution as all our other phones at 720x1,280 pixels, but it uses IGZO Display that lets it optimise the battery better. On the inside of the phone is a 1.7-GHz Octa Core Media Tek MT6592 processor that ensures good battery life.
This is supported by 1 Gigabyte of RAM and 16 Gigabytes of storage. The E7 Mini stands out from the rest with its swivel camera. You rotate the camera to make it a front camera and rotate it back to make it a rear camera. This gives you a 13 megapixel camera for taking selfies. The camera takes nice pictures both in the day and in the evening, though a dark evening becomes an issue. But since the flash also rotates with the camera, you can also use it as a fill light. It also has 12 levels of Auto Beauty that ensures that you always look your best in your pictures. The various modes of photography, like Gestures mode, Panorama shots, Eraser mode, make it a delight for any immature photographer.
LUMIA 730: (Rs 15,299)
The brand new Lumia is slightly larger than its predecessor, but 730 maintains its typical pillow-shaped design, with a 4.7-inch display at a resolution of 720x1280. OLED’s and Nokia’s ClearBlack Polarisation allow it to put up an enhanced contrast picture for better visibility on a sunny day.
It features a 5-Megapixel High Definition Front Camera with a Wide Angle Lens at f/2.4 aperture, allowing you to get some great pictures in the day time and evening, though in dark conditions, this may not really perform as well as you want. There is also a 6.7-Megapixel rear camera with Carl Zeiss Optics, and the capability to shoot a full HD Video. Lumia 730 comes with the Lumia Selfie suite that guides you on how to get better expressions in your photographs. The Wide angle lens, active noise cancellation and a dedicated microphone, with a tight integration of Skype in Windows Phone ecosystem, makes this a great option for video calls, too.
Overall, the Lumia 730 is impressive and emerges as one of the most exciting options. The Windows interface is quick and agile, and the great Skype performance makes it an outright winner. The Iris X5 follows closely with its user-friendly experience and an amazingly low price. From a specifications point of view, the Gionee E7 offers the highest megapixels, but since it’s been around for sometime, there could be a refresh coming soon. It’s better to wait a bit before you buy it. The HTC 820 is the big new kid on the block, but comes with a premium price tag.