It seems almost silly to carry a point and shoot these days. Certainly there are some occasions that call for less than a dSLR and more than a smartphone, but for the most part cellphone cameras can shoot high quality photos and offer the addition of built-in editing apps. Of course sensor size is key too, an oft-forgotten spec overshadowed by giant megapixel counts, but even those are much improved...
1. Nokia 808 PureView (41-Megapixel | $600*)
That's right, that's not a typo, 41 megapixels in a camera phone (38 megapixels at its native resolution). We find it a bit odd that Nokia chose to run it on Symbian, but for those who really want a camera in their pocket this is almost a point and shoot with a bonus phone. We say almost because most point and shoots have zooms lenses and more special hardware than the PureView (not that digital zoom at 38 megapixels is bad) though it does have a nice big flash and 1080p video. The f/2.4 aperture ain't bad either, though not the best. Rumor has it that it will be available in Europe for €450 (about $600) in May.
2. iPhone 4S (8-Megapixel | $199+)
If you watched the address with this iteration of the iPhone came out you saw some of what it can do. Or if you've been on Facebook you've probably been blasted with that one annoying friend's need to take 400 pictures of her day, every day, and share them, all the time. Either way you know that the 8 megapixel camera on the iPhone can take great photos (just, please, no more cats) and has just about an infinite variety of ways to interact with them given the wide array of high quality apps. It's also got an f/2.4 aperture and a better sensor than previous models to make use of those millions of pixels.
3. HTC Amaze 4G (8-Megapixel | $260)
The Amaze is a comfortable transition for point and shoot lovers with its dedicated camera button, video button size and shape. It's got plenty of shooting modes too, including photo stitching and HDR capabilities. And you can adjust the quality in-camera/phone which is more than we can say for most phones (and point and shoots for that matter). That being said, if you're willing to wait the HTC One X is looking pretty nice too.
4. Samsung Galaxy S2 (8-Megapixel | $199.99)
Another 8-megapixel camera phone (the best camera phones seem to hover around that area), the S2 has an enormous 4.5 inch display, runs on Android and supports 1080p video capture. Plus it runs on AT&T's LTE network. Our only complaint is how big it is in our pocket.
5. Motorola Milestone XT720 ($269.99)
The XT720 is a smartphone that looks like a point and shoot. It's got a Xenon flash system, the obligatory 8 megapixels and a dedicated camera button. It's also got common features group together, if not in a perfect interface. If you're interested in something that has the look and feel of your point and shoot, this might be the camera phone for you.
*Prices are dependent on service provider and their deals.
Did we miss an awesome cellphone shooter? Tell us in the comments.
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