BARCELONA -- Officially kicking off the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Nokia early Monday morning unveiled a range of new phone products.
Unlike last year when Nokia only talked about its then-newly established relationship with Microsoft to build Windows-based phones, this year chief executive officer and president Stephen Elop was quick to tell the world that Nokia was coming out the 2012 gates running.
A notable announcement that took those attending today's press conference by surprise was about the new Symbian camera phone that could well up the mobile phone game: Nokia's new 808 PureView, with a jaw-dropping 41 Megapixel sensor. It's expected to start shipping in May with a hefty retail price tag of 450 euro.
The Finnish company also launched three new Asha products and had news about its Lumia line.
In the Asha family, the line-up includes the 302, a premium QWERTY device, and the 202 and 203, which "bring touchscreens to volume-priced products," company officials said.
Nokia Asha 202 family
The Lumia 610, a Windows phone aimed at hyper-social young people, will be added to the Nokia portfolio. The 189 euro phone is expected to ship in the second quarter. Also, the company will make its Lumia 900, which came out last month, available to additional markets beyond the U.S.
Nokia Lumia 610
"One year ago, we shared that Nokia was embarking on a new journey to build great mobile devices," Elop told reporters and analysts. "Today, with our fourth Lumia device, smarter mobile phones and an array of new services, we are demonstrating that we can change the clock speed of Nokia."
If indeed the camera is able to capture true 41MP image, it will be a breakthrough.
Nokia has been consistently delivered fabulous image quality. Nokia communicator E90 delivered only 3.2MP image is able to capture much better image than some of the latest smartphone including iPhone. I was amazed when I saw the great detail from the image captured using macro mode. The color contrast and SNR is measured up to some of the high-end point and shoot.
Like the others, I am questioning how the image is stored. What's the SNR going to be? Assuming the characteristic of the camera is good, 450 euro for the latest Windows Mobile phone seems like a bargain to me.
The only justification that I can come up with is to be able to digital zoom while maintaining a respectable resolution. Even with a Zeiss lens, the pixels are likely to be too small to capture much light at all. It would make sense if it always saved, say a 6MP image file.
This article only mentioned about the size of the sensing element in terms of pixel, being a very old company in the market with serious engineers Nokia might have put the large size camera with some reasoning. Will have to wait for their product promoting advertisements or tech literature.
450 euro seems ridiculously expensive for a Symbian phone, even if it has a 41 megapixel image sensor. Maybe they hope serious photographers will buy it. Oh wait, serious photographers use serious cameras, not camera-phones.
Well, it may not be as bad as we think. From the video, it would appear that are doing at least two sensible things: using Zeiss glass and using the huge number of megapixels to allow a digital zoom without interpolation. Is my tenacious optimism showing? :)
Remember that photo quality depends on: Number of Pixels, Area of each Pixel, signal to noise ratio, lens glass purity, and the DSP chip between the sensor and the storage. Since cell phones compromise on all of these items the result of this phone will simply be large, fuzzy and distorted images, something I will avoid. My old 3.25MP 35mm DSLR produces images better looking than ANY cell phone in the world because it has superior glass, DSP, SNR and pixel area.
41Mega Pixel is a very crazy number. I guess Nokia has to use some special technology to save the image otherwise they need to put a lot of memory which makes the whole phone meaningless. BTW, I'm glad that Nokia finally get some talking points so people won't forget this brand. Hope to see how good this 41M camera works.