Apple iPhone 4 Reader Blowback - TheStreet



) --Our

5 Blemishes

on the


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iPhone story this week generated a fair amount of email. By far, the greatest volume of comments focused on the camera.

Not all readers agreed that the new iPhone's 5-megapixel camera is skimpy.

"Megapixels don't matter nearly as much as glass and the processing of the image," wrote Joseph H., referring to the importance of the lens and the camera chip.

The new Apple iPhone 4

A lot of the feedback was in that vein and initially, the comments sounded like nothing more than Apple fans making apologies for their beloved gadget maker.

For a little background, Apple has always been stingy with cameras in its devices. But in April we reported that Apple had selected a


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8-megapixel camera

for its 2011 iPhone. With the rest of the competition --


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Androids from





, mainly -- aiming at 8 megapixels or higher, the argument for the 5-megapixel superiority sounded weak.

Through a helpful, cynical lens, Apple's 5 megapixel iPhone camera is a convenient stop on the upgrade path. Heck, with Apple moving to 8-megapixel cameras next year, how great can 5-megapixels really be?

To that point, readers weighed in.

"You're right, Apple spins tons of things in their favor, whether its lack of external storage, battery, etc., but the camera is one thing I feel they got right," Brad wrote.

"To be honest, whether it has 3, or 8, or 12 megapixels does not matter to me," Brad continued. "The quality of the photos does, and this camera is one of the first that make me feel comfortable enough to leave my point and shoot at home."

Obviously megapixels are just one measure of a camera's performance. The old argument about it not being about the size but what you do with it falls a bit flat if more megapixels lets you take better picture.

But for many, it continues to be about the processing.

"The 5-megapixel camera argument is pretty frustrating," wrote DragonK. As a hobbyist photographer who was born into the home of a second generation professional photographer, it drives me crazy when people pull the megapixel argument as their only argument as to whether a camera is good or bad."

To DragonK, it's all in the sensor.

"The iPhone has a much larger and more sensitive sensor than basically any camera phone currently available in other mobile devices," DragonK wrote. "And that is ultimately what makes a great picture, not just the resolution."

For others like James W, it wasn't the sensors or the megapixels, but rather the lenses that make or break the camera.

"Going to an eight would be worthless since the lenses in these devices aren't good enough to resolve past 5 or 6 megs anyway," James W wrote.

So what about Apple jumping to 8-megapixels next year? It's a sales gimmick, according to James W.

"If Apple does come out with an eight," James W wrote, "it would only be a based on marketing not performance."

--Compiled by Scott Moritz in New York.