HTC previously showed off some amazing photos taken with an HTC One series phone sporting the fancy new HTC ImageSense technology. Now they have blogged about real-world pictures they took on a hike up Camelback Mountain in Arizona. Maybe they should have checked with their PR department before posting these because they are getting all sorts of negative press on the quality of these pics.
The comments on the HTC blog post have been slamming the pictures, with many people saying they would no longer consider this phone based on these poor samples. The original author of the post responded in the comments with the following:
Ahh – good catch. we actually compressed the images for web to make load times better. We are going through now to get the full size images of our journey up Camelback.
All links to the high resolution versions of the photos have been removed from the blog post and now it only shows small thumbnails so you can’t see the true quality. But the original high resolution versions have been making their rounds since the post first went up, so there’s no hiding them now.
I checked the embedded EXIF data of the originals posted, and it shows the photos were taken by an HTC One S (not the flagship X) and were taken February 28th in the early morning. This makes me think these are straight from the camera and not “compressed for web” as HTC is saying. Of course, the EXIF data could transfer over when compressing a picture, but I don’t believe it usually does. As a test, I compressed and re-saved one of these images in Photoshop and the EXIF data was wiped out, so make of that what you will.
Picture gallery after the break.
To be fair, the phone is most likely still running pre-release software, and the environmental conditions were not optimal for getting good shots with proper lighting. Not to mention the non-professional photographers behind the lens. A better test would have been to take the same pictures with a different phone camera for comparison. It’s also possible the pictures we’re seeing actually look way better than the same pictures taken by any other camera under these same conditions. Until more real-world testing is done, we wouldn’t jump the gun and state the phone’s camera is crap.
So what do you think? Are these pictures just showing us that regular Joes don’t know how to take a good picture, or is their camera not quite as good as advertised?