SwitchLens Adds 1-Inch Sensor, M43 Lenses to Smartphones

China’s Sneaki Design has a new smartphone camera technology called SwitchLens that makes it possible to use professional-quality interchangeable lenses with existing Android and iOS phones. It does this via a phone-mounting external camera unit that has its own one-inch CMOS sensor and coupling device for lenses built to the Micro Four Thirds (M43) open standard. The pro-sized sensor captures still images as 21MP in either the RAW or JPEG formats, and 60p MOV video at up to 4K. Existing M43 compatible lenses from manufacturers including Panasonic and Olympus work with SwitchLens, according to Sneaki Design. Continue reading SwitchLens Adds 1-Inch Sensor, M43 Lenses to Smartphones

Alice Camera Targets Mobile Creators with AI and M43 System

After three years of development, the Alice Camera — which transforms smartphones into mirrorless photographic systems with a mount for interchangeable Micro Four Thirds (M43 or MFT) lenses — is taking preorders and will start shipping July 15, beginning in the UK. The Alice Camera leverages AI to produce “computational photography” that runs on-device in real time. The result, its makers say, is content that is “beautiful straight out of camera” and instantly ready to share. “Alice Camera transforms your phone into a content creation studio,” according to parent company, London-based Photogram Ltd. Continue reading Alice Camera Targets Mobile Creators with AI and M43 System

NAB: Blackmagic Unveils Two New Full-Frame Cine Cameras

Blackmagic Design has introduced two new attention-getting cameras at NAB 2024 in Las Vegas. The flagship URSA Cine 12K LF (large format) has a new full-frame sensor with 16-stop dynamic range, comes with 8TB of built-in storage, and starts at $14,995. It ships with a Canon EF mount, but also accommodates ARRI PL. Blackmagic will also make the URSA available with a 17K sensor, but has yet to share pricing (though it is expected to cost from $20,000 to $25,000). The $2,995 PYXIS 6K cinema box-style camera offers a choice of three lens attachments: EF, PL or L-mount. Continue reading NAB: Blackmagic Unveils Two New Full-Frame Cine Cameras

Sony 4K 60p PTZ Broadcast Camera Boasts AI Auto Framing

Sony Electronics is previewing a new flagship 4K 60p pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) camera model, the BRC-AM7, which has an integrated lens that uses artificial intelligence for PTZ Auto Framing technology to control advanced tracking and focus. The camera provides “accurate and natural automatic tracking of moving subjects,” making it ideal for live events and sports productions at broadcast quality. Set for release in 2025, Sony says the BRC-AM7 is the world’s “smallest and lightest” integrated lens PTZ camera, weighing in at just over 8 pounds. The camera is among the numerous Sony products featured at NAB 2024 in Las Vegas. Continue reading Sony 4K 60p PTZ Broadcast Camera Boasts AI Auto Framing

CES: Circana Foresees an Increase in Tech Spending in 2024

The technology sector had a tough 2023. During a CES session in Las Vegas yesterday, Circana Vice President Paul Gagnon and Circana Industry Analyst Ben Arnold revealed the details of what they’ve been tracking over the last year, noting both areas of decline and “pockets of growth.” They encouraged tech vendors to look for innovative ways to sell products, targeting consumers via age group and income bracket as well as looking at geographic zones such as Mexico that are experiencing growth. The good news, they stressed, was the return of growth in the latter half of 2023. Continue reading CES: Circana Foresees an Increase in Tech Spending in 2024

Sony Xperia 5 V Phone Is Built for Creators and Entertainment

Unveiled at IFA 2023, Sony’s Xperia 5 V is a smartphone aimed at creators that also happens to be an entertainment powerhouse. Features include a 6.1-inch OLED HD+ screen, Bravia X1 mobile image engine, and a front stage sound system with “powerful deep bass” that Sony says eliminates the need for external speakers. Building on the preceding model, upgrades include the Video Creator app, which edits select video content into a finished clip in about a minute. This new iteration shoots 4K video at up to 120fps in HDR and features optical image stabilization. A dedicated microphone can isolate and capture the main vocal amidst environmental noise and other voices. Continue reading Sony Xperia 5 V Phone Is Built for Creators and Entertainment

CES: Magic Leap 2 Exhibits Impressive Dimming Capabilities

The most impressive feature of the Magic Leap 2 demo at CES 2023 involves Global and Segmented Dimming. Global Dimming is a feature that dims the entire display without dimming digital content to make text and images more solid and precise. Segmented Dimming dims specific portions of the display to enhance legibility and clarity of selected content, and can also be used to focus attention to areas or components of interest. Both of these features produced outstanding visual results during our CES demo. Segmented Dimming produced very bright digital objects in front of a well-lit room, while Global Dimming could be used for VR immersion. Continue reading CES: Magic Leap 2 Exhibits Impressive Dimming Capabilities

CES: LG Innotek Intros Optical Zoom Camera Tech for Mobile

LG exited the smartphone market in 2021, but its LG Innotek division continues to supply components, and is touting a major breakthrough with its Optical Telephoto Zoom Camera Module to be unveiled this week at CES 2023. As part of the rear-mounted smartphone camera systems, the new optical zoom allows still images and video to be magnified by four to nine times “without image quality degradation even when zooming from long distance,” the company says. The results are achieved by integrating the telescopic camera functions that are mostly applied to professional DSLR and mirrorless cameras. Continue reading CES: LG Innotek Intros Optical Zoom Camera Tech for Mobile

Pinterest Adds Today Tab for Topics, Shop Tab for Products

Pinterest, the website and mobile app that describes itself as a “visual discovery engine,” showcased “Today,” a tab on the user’s Pinterest home page that features topics and ideas curated by Pinterest staff and trending pins selected by algorithms. “Today” is a response to changing customer behavior during the coronavirus pandemic. The platform’s global monthly active users reached 367+ million, up from about 300 million last September. During the last few months, searches and boards have both leapt up 60 percent compared to last year. Continue reading Pinterest Adds Today Tab for Topics, Shop Tab for Products

Pinterest Introduces New Features to Make Shopping Easier

In an effort to become more of a personal shopping assistant, Pinterest has introduced product recommendations with its new Product Pin system based on an individual’s tastes. It has also launched a shopping shortcut in the main home feed that provides easy access to a shopping-specific feed and list of shoppable Product Pins by holding down a Home or Style pin to access a shopping tag icon. Pinterest previously rolled out Buyable Pins for direct purchases through the platform in addition to other recommendation features such as Shop the Look and Lens that use machine learning and visual search. Continue reading Pinterest Introduces New Features to Make Shopping Easier

Apple Plans to Offer Three New iPhones With Bigger Screens

Apple is expected to launch three new mobile phones this fall that will mimic the edge-to-edge screen design of the company’s flagship iPhone X, released last November. According to those familiar with the plans, the new iPhones will vary in price and feature a range of features and sizes, although a wholly new design is not expected until 2019. The largest of the three new devices will reportedly tout a 6.5-inch display, stainless steel edges, and glass back with dual cameras. It will feature an OLED screen and the ability to view apps like Mail and Calendar side-by-side. Continue reading Apple Plans to Offer Three New iPhones With Bigger Screens

Google Clips Camera Relies on AI to Capture Familiar Faces

The marriage of cameras and artificial intelligence opens the doors to all kinds of interesting capabilities. For now, however, Google is introducing its Clips wireless smart camera with the pitch that AI will enable it to take better pictures than a dumb camera. While the $249 Clips uses machine learning to automatically capture short clips (motion photos without audio) of people and pets, Apple’s latest iPhone relies on face recognition to unlock, and now startup Lighthouse AI plans to add intelligence to a security camera to analyze the results. Continue reading Google Clips Camera Relies on AI to Capture Familiar Faces

Vuzix Blade AR Smart Sunglasses Win Multiple Awards at CES

At CES 2018 in Las Vegas last week, Vuzix debuted the Vuzix Blade, AR smart sunglasses that are the result of years of research and are based on the company’s proprietary waveguide technology. The glasses work via a tiny LED projector in the temple area of the glasses that shoots an image sideways into the lens. The lenses are laser-etched with dots at different depths that “catch” the projected image and illumine it in the wearer’s field of view. When the AR functionality is turned off, the glasses look ordinary. Continue reading Vuzix Blade AR Smart Sunglasses Win Multiple Awards at CES

Pinterest Updates its Visual Search, Adds New Zoom Feature

Following last month’s updates making search and Lens functions more easily accessible via the home feed of Pinterest’s app, the popular photo-sharing and discovery platform has now added the ability to zoom inside Pins for a closer look at images and GIFs. The new feature (presently available for iOS and coming soon to Android) is one of the app’s most user-requested features. It is also joined by an updated visual search for finding specific objects. Interestingly, the same image search is available starting this week without a Pinterest account, via the Chrome browser extension. Continue reading Pinterest Updates its Visual Search, Adds New Zoom Feature

Pinterest and Google Compete to Offer the Top Visual Search

Pinterest is highlighting the “Search” and “Lens” features on its mobile apps, emphasizing its move into this arena. Lens, which was introduced to U.S. users this year, is a reverse image search tool that allows users to take a photograph of something and then use smart search to return pins with similar images and related design ideas. Lens is now available to users of the iOS application; Pinterest says it will soon launch the Android version. Google is also upgrading its visual search engine to compete in this space. Continue reading Pinterest and Google Compete to Offer the Top Visual Search