A recent projection from ABI Research has calculated that over one billion cameras were fitted in smartphones and tablets shipped last year. Almost every current smartphone has a built-in camera, with around a third having both rear-facing and front-facing cameras. An even higher proportion of tablet devices has two cameras.
The study reveals that most smartphones released in 2012 had a camera of around 8 megapixel resolution, with the exception of the Symbian-powered Nokia PureView 808. Instead of differentiating products with increased resolution, manufacturers have promoted features including autofocus, rapid capture mode, best picture and low light capability to set their products apart from competitors.
Josh Flood, senior analyst at ABI Research, said “Advancements in imaging technology are opening new doors for smartphones and media tablets. Mobile device cameras are becoming more than just a digital camera for taking snapshots of your kids and pet. New services like augmented reality and gesture recognition are now easily conceivable in mobile devices. Two hundred and thirty million smartphones are projected to be shipped with gesture recognition in 2015.”
In 2018, 2.7 billion cameras are expected to ship in mobile devices according to ABI Research; 80% of these will be in smartphones.