Have you ever snapped a photo with your smartphone and thought: if only I had a better camera! You've probably been there, and you aren't alone. Since most of us use our smartphones to take pictures these days, it's really no shock that companies like Sony are trying to create camera attachments for smartphones that make smartphone cameras better.
Sony's latest smartphone attachments are the Cyber-shot QX10 and the QX100. As you might have guessed, these lenses snap onto your existing smartphone aiming to provide you with a better overall photo experience. Here's what you'll find if you purchase either one of these smartphone camera attachments.
A Real Live Camera!
We've seen smartphone camera attachments before. Lots of them. So, what makes these Sony devices different? First of all, these are actual camera - really. They aren't just magnifying boxes that do little more than create an illusion that you're taking a quality photo. Both the QX100 and the QX10 come with automatic zoom, the heft and weight you want with a professional-grade camera (dare I say that?), and - interesting fact - can be used with or without a smartphone.
All you have to do is add a microSD card to one of these lenses, and you've got yourself a lens/camera of sorts. It's a great idea, but not entirely useful (it's kind of odd to snap photos with just a lens, don't you think?). These lenses do snap onto a smartphone with ease, though, and both of the lenses worth with Sony's PlayMemories Mobile app.
Essentially, this Sony app turns your smartphone into your camera body and viewfinder. The app runs smoothly and is well-designed. When using the app and either lens to shoot a set up shot, the whole experience is a great one. Sony's lenses do make your smartphone one of the best cameras you'll ever use - okay, maybe not that great, but they will make your smartphone the best portable camera option.
The only drawback here is that it takes a few minutes to open the app, set up the lens, and shoot. So, I don't see a lot of people grabbing these lenses plus smartphone in order to take quick snapshots. But, both of these lenses would be fun to have if you do have the time and option to shoot something that's somewhat leisurely.
Costs and Other Details
While a great idea (and the best smartphone lens option on the market to date, it seems - unless you know of a better one?), the Sony lenses may be too expensive for the average smartphone user. At $249 for the QX10 and $499 for the QX100, these lenses might not appeal to all smartphone users (especially since most smartphones now come with seriously great cameras). But, for the serious photographer that wants a fast and compact smartphone option, Sony's new smartphone lenses are ideal.
You can find these lenses in the Sony store now - though I do recommend testing them out in-person prior to purchase.