Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Night Camera Brings Usability Features!

Night Camera ($0.99) from Sudobility is an iPhone application that is designed to "prevent the blur in the first place", as stated by the developer. Night Camera will not automagically increase the size or resolution of the iPhone's photo sensor, nor will it decrease the noise profile, or increase the dynamic range of your photos. Night Camera will not turn your cell phone camera into a digital SLR!

But... it does improve upon the "capture" functionality of Apple's Camera application. There are two options that I am particularly fond of:

  1. Fullscreen Shutter - allows you to use the full screen as the shutter button, this is a huge improvement over the shutter button used in Camera.

  2. Stable mode - uses the accelerometer to trigger the shutter when it detects that the camera is stable (3 sensitivity settings). This is ideal for shooting photos of stationary objects, if trying to take a picture of your toddler, you may become frustrated missing the shot or blur from the moving object as the shutter speed is still very slow in low light situations.

Night Camera also provides a timer option and auto shutter - meaning the camera will take a picture once the application is launched. You can also set an option to have the image auto saved, thus dismissing with the review and save procedure.

For me, the Fullscreen shutter option is worth the price of admission. In real world usage, I find that I use my iPhone camera to take pictures of products in various retail settings for further analysis when I return home. For this usage, I set Night Camera to Stable mode with Fullscreen shutter on, since the product is typically stationary, the Stable mode assures that camera shake will be minimized, resulting in a sharp image. If I am taking a quick snapshot of my 2 year old, I turn off stable mode and go into Standard camera mode and leave Fullscreen shutter enabled.

In conclusion, I have relegated Apple's Camera application to screen NINE and moved Night Camera to the HomeScreen, in essence replacing the build in Camera application.

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