Monday, 30th October 2017

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Penta-lens camera system on the back of a phone? Nokia 9 PureView has done just that

HMD Global has also teamed up with Adobe and has delivered Lightroom preinstalled on the set

  • Published 18.07.19, 12:47 PM
  • Updated 18.07.19, 12:47 PM
  • 3 mins read
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On the Nokia 9 PureView, each of the five cameras on the back has a 12MP sensor. The phone is priced Rs 49,999 Picture: HMD Global

The big tech news of 2012 included Nokia coming up with the 808 PureView, which featured an astounding 41MP camera and it came with proprietary software by adapting satellite imaging technology. In 2019, HMD Global, which has given the Finnish company a new lease of life, is trying to write a new chapter with the Nokia 9 PureView (Rs 49,999), which has five cameras on its back. The device uses the same key specs for all five cameras: each one has a 12MP sensor (f/1.8) but only two of those five cameras shoot in colour; the rest are monochrome. The company has also teamed up with Adobe and has delivered Lightroom preinstalled on the set.

Ajey Mehta, HMD Global vice-president and country head (India).
Ajey Mehta, HMD Global vice-president and country head (India). Picture: HMD Global

t2 spoke to Ajey Mehta, HMD Global vice-president and country head (India), to understand the power of 9.

Photography is obviously the focus on this phone. How did you plan the device?

Nokia 9 PureView is a smartphone that brings innovations for photography enthusiasts and those who love cutting-edge technology. It was designed keeping in mind three types of consumers. First, photography fanatics. They like photographs to capture all the details and they do post-production work. Then there is the photo enthusiast, a person who likes to capture moments using the phone camera and directly share the same from the device. Lastly, the photography newbie… people who are new to the game of mobile photography but are eager to learn and explore. Of the five lenses on the camera, three are colour and two, monochromatic. They provide depth and a dynamic range to the pictures and the ability to do much more in way of post-production work on the photographs. The way I see it, imaging is going to be a critical purchase driver. We will continue to work on improving our imaging capabilities. The device makes a statement about our ability to partner with the best in the industry and deliver the best.

What’s new in way of design?

We announced the phone at the last Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. We have been known for our imaging capabilities and have a partnership with ZEISS. The design of the phone is pretty unique; it doesn’t have the bump in the back like other cameras (on phones) do. Also, the phone slips easily into the pocket. A lot of effort has gone into designing the phone while enhancing its photographic capability. Putting in five lenses takes quite a bit of innovation. We have got a lot of photographers interested in the phone and the quality of imaging. There are some apps, like Lightroom, that we have incorporated into the phone to make post-production work easy.

Picture taken on Nokia 9 PureView
Picture taken on Nokia 9 PureView

Will the phone’s cost be a deterrent?

It offers a premium experience. Consumers buying PureView will also receive a premium concierge service for 30 days, which includes exclusive support desk that will allow access to our master trainer to provide tips and tricks on photography. Consumers will also receive (free) the wireless earbuds that we have recently launched (priced Rs 9,999).

You went with a Snapdragon 845 processor while most premium phones this year has the 855. Any reason behind it?

This is probably the first time that the 845 processor has been harnessed to its full potential. We are always in the business of delivering an experience and we wanted to maximise it with this device. It’s no point using this and that chipsets for the sake of using it. We believe that Snapdragon 845 has worked brilliantly for us and it has helped us intelligently, splitting the work between the different cores of the chipset. The 845 has delivered the experience we wanted to deliver.

Besides photography, what are the other big features?

You have the in-display fingerprint scanner, there is face recognition… in terms of speed, feel and design there is a lot to offer. When it comes to imaging, the device takes everything more than a notch higher.

What else can we expect from HMD?

We have launched 2.2, 3.2, 4.2, which are doing well. We will continue to focus on our feature phone portfolio and we are also preparing for the festive season.

Camera magic
  • Working in perfect unison, the five 12MP cameras collect up to 10 times more light than a single smartphone camera colour1 sensor. The results: photos with superb dynamic range that capture detail and texture from both the highlights and shadows, plus incredible depth-of-field and vibrant, truest-to-life colour.
  • HDR images and video captured with the device feature exceptional dynamic range, preserving the details within the highlights and shadows alike.
  • Each of the five cameras automatically adopt the optimal settings for various parts of the scene. Then, synced with bespoke algorithms and advanced AI, the cameras shoot simultaneously. Finally, the images are fused into a single HDR photo with texture and detail from both the shadows and the highlights.
  • The five cameras create an incredibly accurate depth map of your image. This gives you ultimate focal control when editing the photo long after the shot is taken.
  • Pick out a face in a crowd or leaf in a forest. Using depth mode, Nokia 9 PureView can identify over 1,200 layers, which it uses to build a detailed depth map. This lets you re-discover elements of your photo by re-focusing the shot later in Google Photos.
  • Native monochrome mode captures the image in black-and-white instead of converting it after the shot. This unique method delivers stunningly crisp black-and-white photos with exquisite detail.