The other major new addition in the camera department is the ability to record video. This is another one of those features that the iPhone haters have been harping on about since Apple launched its phone, but I never really missed video recording on my phone. Now that the iPhone does record video, I’m sure that many will still complain that it only supports 640 x 480, and of course, there’s no zoom function.
I guess with phones like the Samsung i8910 HD already able to shoot 720p high definition video, the limited, 4:3 resolution video offered by the 3GS is a bit disappointing. But then I’m not convinced that I’d want to be shooting HD video with my phone – is anyone really trying to shoot high quality video with their phone, or is it more a case of a quick video clip of your friends/children/complete strangers doing something cool/funny/ridiculous?
What is impressive is the ability to perform basic video editing on the phone. When you shoot a video you get a complete frame by frame timeline. Touching either edge of the timeline lets you trim the video down, thus eliminating any unwanted footage and leaving you with, err, the money shot, so to speak. If you hold your finger on the timeline it will expand, making it even easier to trim to the exact frame you’re after.
The overall quality of the captured video is nothing to write home about, but it’s perfectly acceptable from a mobile phone. Ultimately, this is the sort of video recording you used to get from an average, compact digital camera a few years back, and for the most part I imagine that the results will end up on YouTube, rather than being viewed on a high definition TV.
There’s still no facility for video calling though, made clear by the fact that there’s no user facing, second camera. Whether that’s an issue is a personal thing – I can’t say that I’ve ever felt the need to make a video call, but I do know people that do.