Selfie has been a huge consumer fad since last twelve months or so. According to Google, Android users capture and share almost 93 million selfies everyday which equates to roughly 200 terabytes of images captured and shared daily and that too just in the Android ecosystem. When you add iPhones and other devices, the number is going to be staggering. Globally we could end up with 150 petabytes worth selfies or 50 billion selfies being captured and shared for the full year 2014. This is huge trend in the mobile industry and with average camera megapixel resolution of the front-camera increasing with every model refresh, we could end up even higher.
This is hard to ignore consumer habit which smartphone brands and many players in the mobile value chain would like to exploit. We have already seen this year OEMs trying to focus more on front-facing camera to jump into the selfie-bandwagon. Huawei announced its phablet Ascend Mate 2 with a 5MP front camera with capability to capture a panoramic selfie whereas LG G3 added gesture based ‘selfie mode‘ to effortlessly capture selfies and HTC as well with a 5MP camera in front with 80 degree viewing angle and selfie mode in One M8.
Sony is one of the top brands when comes to integrating cutting edge camera sensors and image processing technology into its phones i.e. from Sony cybershot feature phones era to now in Sony Z2. The Japanese brand leveraging this more than decade long expertise and the growing selfie mania, announced Sony Xperia C3, marketed as the world’s best”selfie smartphone“. Its astute of Sony to differentiate not only by adding selfie features but also market and position it as a “selfie smartphone”, should kickstart selfie smartphone wars.
Sony has specially-optimized C3 for capturing selfies by integrating a 5MP wide-angle front facing camera coupled with a soft LED flash.
Sony has packaged the hardware with special software for the front camera:
- Superior Auto mode for auto recognition of upto four different types of scenes
- Portrait Retouch: To makeover selfie portraits in real-time, upto two people per image before
- AR Effect: This feature allows user to add different AR effects to the selfie portrait, adding a fun element to selfies
In addition to this, Sony has bundled in the other standard camera related features from timeshift burst, movie creator, panorama to social live-broadcast and more. The Sony Xperia C3 will be available in India starting 1st September for INR 23990 (or ~$396) and roll-out has already begun in other Asian markets.
We believe this trend will continue to drive more brands launching more selfie smartphones to not miss out on this hot trend. Though we hope that we don’t see operators launching a ‘selfie-only’ data pack or startups launching social network just for selfies..
Some good infographics from Sony on the Selfie trend: