Future is unpredictable, but it would not be that hard to forecast the future of cameras. It would be AI all the way.
Today, Artificial Intelligence is so pervasive that it’s rare to stay untouched from its applications. Smartphones are fast-replacing the traditional devices that once formed the core of any activity and hobby. First-came high-quality zoom cameras, and now voice-enabled assistants. The next stage of smartphone evolution has begun with many OEMs already offering AI cameras for niche customers. These niche AI cameras are targeting video bloggers (vloggers), influencers, and live streaming Media journalists. It is astonishing how mobile OEMs are focusing on AI cameras in their mobile phones that not only click pictures but also think and mimic human actions during photography.
How AI Cameras Make Sense?
I was looking for an outstanding package while shopping for a smartphone in our local mobile gallery. The top features that we searched for included,
- Memory Configuration for High-Speed Computing
- High battery backup of up to 8 hours
- High-quality screen
- Powerful Camera for back and front-enabled shutter
- Safety and Security
If you watch closely, AI is a ubiquitous feature that has penetrated into all these applications. But, very few manufacturers are offering AI Cameras in their mobile phone models. AI Enhancements definitely made the cut for me in picking the new model.
“AI-enhanced camera” is the new hot phrase that attracted me. Like any novice tech follower, I was intrigued to learn more about what exactly AI in cameras does and how it is influencing our simple choices in life – even relationships, dating, law enforcement, and travel and hospitality!
Smartness and intelligence are changing the course of mankind, and with mobile phones taking the bulk of our attention, it’s only obvious that we can apply AI to these devices. AI-enabled smartphones are the biggest and most pandemic marketplace to apply new-age emerging technologies.
According to independent research, the number of smartphone users has surpassed three billion. It is forecasted to grow by a few hundred millions by next year. China, India, and the United States have the highest number of smartphone users, with each country easily surpassing the 100 million user mark. With the introduction of 5G technology and AI-enabled cameras, the growth of the Smartphone is only going to see an upward trend.
The Tech Driving AI Cameras in Mobile Phones
AI Camera technology is a hotbed of AI and Computational Science. It leverages Machine Learning algorithms that can exercise software-trained simulated actions. These are —
Some high-end AI Cameras also leverage sensors, IoT, Biometrics and identity management technologies. However, we will stick to the ones listed in the bullets. Simple AI Cameras use ‘computational image/ video photography’ technology that brings together image recognition, computer vision, AI and Machine Learning.
Google’s marquee product in this industry, Pixel 2, uses advanced technology. It is marketed as ‘Federated Learning‘, a technology that allows the cameras and humans “to collaboratively learn improvements without sharing their data.”
Similarly, HONOR Mobile Phones explain the tech driving their AI Cameras. It states —
“In mobile, the AI camera has been trained to understand a thing or two about camera setting and image processing that’s easy for professional photographers. In other words, the AI camera can help amateur photographer chooses the most applicable exposure and color adjustments for the perfect shots.”
HUAWEI P20 is another leading player in this space. HUAWEI P20 AI camera can recognize more than 500 objects and categorize them into 19 segmented scenes. This level of Image Recognition capability is achieved through augmented intelligence taught to the processor to identify objects and distinguish one thing from another.
Huawei states that it had put the AI through over 10 million images when designing the SoC.
In advanced AI cameras, we can expect OEMs to provide advanced immersive photography experiences. These could include Voice, Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, mixed with AI platforms. Mobile and Camera manufacturers could start using various tools like ARCore, an SDK that let Android developers create mesmerizing AR experiences.
Applications of AI Cameras
In general, AI Cameras can be used for diverse activities. From an industry point of view, in addition to mobiles, these cameras can make an immediate inroad into metallurgy, surgical science, neuropathy, material testing and strength, automobile, and astronomy.
In fact, AI cameras would be the game-changer in the Big Data Analytics for understanding the gazillion data pouring in from high-quality images of the galaxy. Another stage would be the advancement in law enforcement, road traffic management, and gun detection. Night photography and gourmet vlogging, the dearest of all mobile photography aficionados could see wide-scale adoption and application of AI Cameras.