Front cameras have been an ever-favourite feature to advertise selfie-centric smartphones. These selfie cameras have grown so much in importance that OEMs have been offering dedicated smartphone line-ups focusing mainly on the front camera. There are phones with two front cameras, some flip over to use the rear camera as a selfie camera and some with up to 48MP resolution. Not all of us may take a lot of selfies, but the front camera does come in use for video calls, which is now a norm. That’s not all, a good front camera also serves the growing number of digital content creators be it for Instagram Reels or a daily vlog. We’ve compiled a list of smartphones on Amazon.
Samsung Note 20 Ultra 5G
The Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra is the most high-end Note device the company has ever made. It not only packs a robust set of internals like the 7nm Exynos 990, 12GB RAM and 1TB storage but also a great display, stunning design, good battery and tons of software tricks for creative individuals. What brings it to this list is its front camera performance from its 12MP sensor with f/2.2 aperture and 120-degree field of view. The performance is as good as it is from its trio of rear cameras combining a 108MP wide camera, a 12MP ultra-wide camera and a 12MP telephoto lens with 5x optical zoom. Apart from the hardware, Samsung has also worked on improving its software on this one, the quality of images from the front camera now look more detailed, close to nature and the low light performance is also improved. Moreover, there is a pro mode for both stills and videos and you can record 4K at 60fps using the front camera.
The OnePlus 8 is the best performing phone in its segment as it comes with a top-notch Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 chipset with 5G support along with an octa-core CPU and Adreno 650 GPU. Its OxygenOS ensures a smooth and efficient performance in the long run. The 90Hz refresh-rate display also makes the whole experience smoother as it irons out the lags in animations and transitions. Apart from this, the biggest welcome improvement on the phone over its predecessor is its camera performance. The OnePlus 8 features a 48MP primary camera and other two cameras – a 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera with 116-degree field-of-view and a macro. Both rear and front cameras are quite impressive for the price. Those who want a balance of a premium software and hardware with a good selfie camera under a budget should definitely consider this. It has a 16MP wide-angle front camera with f/2.4 aperture, auto HDR and EIS.
Apple iPhone 12
The iPhone 12 makes it to the list because of its higher value for money as it has the same front camera as its more expensive siblings. The best thing about the iPhone 12 is that it makes little compromise over its Pro variant and can be bought at a lower price. It runs on the most powerful mobile chipset A14 Bionic and features one of the highest-rated rear camera setups right now. It features two cameras instead of three but the most it misses is the telephoto camera and LiDAR sensor, however, the front camera is the same 12MP sensor with f/2.2 aperture offering Smart HDR 3 for photos. While photos come out well, the videos are also impressive as it features cinematic stabilisation, and records 4K up to 60fps. Users can make the most of its extended dynamic range, HDR with Dolby vision up to 30fps.
Google Pixel 4A
Google’s Pixel phones are synonymous to great camera performance since the very first Pixel phone they made. Interestingly, the company has extended the smartphone range to a more affordable segment with the ‘A’ series. The latest one to join the affordable range is the Pixel 4A, which brings flagship camera prowess down to mid-range. The Pixel 4a uses the same Sony IMX363 12MP camera as the original Pixel released 4 years ago, and the results are quite at par with what you get on other smartphones launched in 2020. Coming to the front camera, Pixel 4A is one of the few phones in its range to offer an impressive combination of computational photography and AI for both front and rear cameras. It uses an 8MP fixed focus camera with f/2.0 aperture, which can record up to 1080p videos at 30fps. Note that the only shortcoming is that you can’t rely on it for intensive gaming, and it’s more suitable for shutterbugs who need a quality camera performance without spending a premium.
Google asks Wear OS users to fill out survey with update expected soon
Google I/O is taking place next week where the company will announce updates and future improvements across its various platforms, operating systems, and online services. Android Central reports that some users on Android have been prompted to fill a survey to help improve Wear OS.
There has been much speculation about Wear OS and what direction Google may be steering the platform. Ever since Google’s Acquisition of Fitbit, it was rumored that Google planned to launch a Pixel-branded smartwatch, but that never materialized.
Scrolling through Wear OS App drawer on Skagen Faslter 3 using its rotating dial
In recent months, Wear OS has been seeing gradual updates to core features like Google Fit, and more recently, it received an update to the built-in Gboard formatted for tiny-screen input. Custom Tiles are expected to come with the Spring update as well.
Wear OS is expected to be a significant focus at this year’s Google I/O given the amount of time it’s been since Wear OS received a significant update. As of this writing, there is currently no replacement app for Google Play Music, which was fully retired last year and succeeded by YouTube Music, which still has no app for Wear OS.
It’s going to be interesting to see how Google will optimize Wear OS for Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon Wear 4100 platform.
Unannounced Realme Narzo 30 stars in hands-on video ahead of launch
Realme’s Narzo 30 family is so far comprised of the Narzo 30 Pro 5G and the Narzo 30A, but there’s a third member coming soon. This will be the ‘vanilla’ Narzo 30, which was already spotted in a benchmark last month.
Although we still don’t know exactly when this phone is due to become official, someone has already gotten their hands on a review unit, and promptly posted an unboxing and hands-on video on YouTube – of a phone that isn’t even announced yet. Here it is for your viewing pleasure.
The device comes in a blue Narzo box, and has a 6.5-inch IPS LCD FHD+ 90Hz display with 580 nits of maximum brightness, a triple rear camera system (48 MP main, 2 MP black and white, 2 MP macro), 6GB of RAM, 128GB of expandable storage (with a dedicated slot), the MediaTek Helio G95 chipset at the helm, and a 5,000 mAh battery with 30W fast charging support.
It runs Android 11 with Realme UI 2.0 on top, weighs 192g and is 9.4mm thick. This unit is in the Racing Silver colorway. Unsurprisingly, there’s a soft jelly case in the box too. The phone is made of plastic and the fingerprint sensor is embedded in the power button on the right side. A 3.5mm headphone jack is on the bottom.
Redmi Note 10S receives MIUI 12.5 update right before launching in India
Quick, let’s play a game of “which Redmi is this”? Can you name, off the top of your head, what the Redmi Note 10S has going for it that’s different than all the other Redmi Note 10 series devices? No? Well, it’s the one with the MediaTek Helio G95 chipset, if that helps.
It became available last month in specific markets, and is going to be made official for India on May 13. Now just a few days before that, it’s receiving the update to MIUI 12.5. It’s still going to run Android 11, of course, just with the newer skin on top.
MIUI 12.5 was unveiled for international markets in February, following a December announcement for the Chinese market, and since then it’s slowly started to make its way to more and more Xiaomi and Redmi devices. The pace still isn’t very fast, but it should pick up over the next few weeks.
The builds that are on their way to the Redmi Note 10S are as follows: 126.96.36.199.RKLEUXM for Europe, 188.8.131.52.RKLMIXM for other global markets, and 184.108.40.206.RLLINXM for India. This will either be preinstalled on units that will go on sale in India, or will be presented as a day-one update once you take the phone out of the box.
In case you need a quick refresher, the Redmi Note 10S has a 6.43-inch 1080×2400 AMOLED touchscreen, 6/8 GB of RAM, 64/128GB of expandable storage, a quad rear camera setup (64 MP main, 8 MP ultrawide, 2 MP macro, 2 MP depth), a 13 MP selfie snapper, and a 5,000 mAh battery with 33W fast charging.
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