Advertisements for new smartphones, whether it’s the latest iPhone or the next Samsung Galaxy, inevitably feature the latest camera functions. Whether it’s Animojis, multiple cameras featuring time-lapse, time travel and depth-imaging features, or cameras that can see in the dark, today’s smartphones are marvels of imaging engineering.
A recent survey by Morning Consult suggests, however, most users would be happier with longer battery life, better ease-of-use, more storage, and better durability. “Camera quality” is certainly important – it’s the fifth-most important feature – but other than that, advanced imaging features like AR/VR and facial recognition were dissed.
According to Felix Richter, writing at Statista: “Interestingly, many of the recent innovations in smartphone technology, e.g. AR/VR and facial recognition, are among the features Americans don’t really care about. This, along with ever-rising prices, could explain the recent slowdown in worldwide smartphone sales, at least to a certain extent.”
In the original Morning Consult article, CTA senior director of innovation and trends Ben Arnold says manufacturers are working to improve battery life and usability, but focus marketing on bells-and-whistles to differentiate between competitors.
“Although everyone is very focused on battery life, it’s not a super-exciting marketing point when you’re doing these great presentations,” said Arnold. “Even though the specific specs around the camera as a buying motivation aren’t super high, it seems to get a lot of attention when new phones come out.”