Nokia 808 PureView – The History In The Making

Yesterday we’ve been to the Nokia 808 PureView workshop in Mumbai at Taj Lands End, Bandra. It was held by the Head of Symbian Product Marketing, Vesa Jutila. The workshop was obvious as it might go. The workshop started off a little slowly and late. We, right there in the middle of the auditorium, were stunned just at the testing of the HDMI connection and sound testing. I’ll apologize for not getting many pics from the event because of some technical difficulties but you have to believe me. You once sit in a Dolby Digital Surround Sound hall and with the output of Nokia 808, you just can’t believe if its a theater or just your normal place.


Nokia 808 PureView consists of PureView Technology just as the name suggests. Pure View Technologies, which is a nick name for High -performance sensors, Image processing algorithms and use of Precision Carl Zeiss Optics assures that you have the best photos possible in your cameraphone. We’ve already saw the awesomeness of Carl Zeiss optics right from the days of N73 till the N8 and now we’ve something that beats all of it with the PureView tech in the new Nokia 808.

Vesa Jutila has explained a lot of stuff about the camera module and the sensor of the Nokia 808 just as it was available on the internet. This is how the camera module looks.


These are some pics of the sensor of the 808 as compared to a 5mp and 8mp sensor.

You shall also know how the camera module looks just outside the phone compared in the size.

Sadly, I can’t really show how good the Dolby Digital samples were in the 5.1 surround sound hall, all I can say is, you need to be there to feel it.

The camera UI this time is much more detailed than what we could think it could be. This time, it had three modes from which you can select the one that fits you the best as per the situation and environment. This consists of full ‘Automatic’, ‘Scenes’ mode to select from a different types of scene modes right from landscape to snow and ‘Creative’ where you can set many of those controls manually to give you a desired result.

The Nokia 808 using PureView Pro Imaging Technology consists Super high-resolution sensor with 41 megapixels, Sophisticated processing algorithms for pixel oversampling and Best camera phone optics to date developed jointly by Nokia and Carl Zeiss. It was ironic when they showed us the slides in the event, they had this picture of the 808 on a Canon EF 24-70mm lens. This shows how much they are proud of the tech and how good the camera of the 808 can be.

This time they also have integrated the direct sharing to social networks like facebook and flickr directly from the app. People are going to have a hard time uploading the pictures due the huge size of the pictures but then when Vesa was asked about the Data Class used in the 808, he didn’t have a word nor an idea on it. We also asked about the social integration of other social networks like Twitter and LinkedIn and he said that they might integrate those services also but they can’t comment on it right now.

In the 808 camera, they have also used the ND filter [aka Neutral density filter] which is used for reducing or modifying the intensity of colors equally so that it doesn’t give any changes in the hue of color rendition. This filter also gives the photographer a greater comfort in setting the aperture, exposure time and motion blur of the subject in different situations. This ND filter switch helps a lot in photographing different environments like a sunny day or a moving subject like a car or speeding athlete.

The ISO settings in the 808 camera are provided from a low setting of 50 till a high ISO settings of 1600. And the results of the video in this camera are surprising. We were showed a video sample of fireworks and there was literally no noise in such conditions. Vesa also added on it; its very hard for a camera to adjust the settings so quickly that there shouldn’t be any over exposure during a fireworks shot and 808 did a very good job on it where the video was just as how our naked eyes would see it in real life.

The zooming is not very practical on the 808. It uses its 41MP to its full extent to give a full reolution 5MP shot. That means, instead of zooming, the camera crops out the live finder to show you the part that you want to click. So instead of that what I’ll prefer is take a full shot and then crop it later as per my need.

In the creative mode, which is also represented in three sub-divisions of C1, C2 and C3; you can also set the picture quality to Pure View or Full Resolution. If you select Full Resolution mode, it’ll give you a full resolution image of 34MP.

The really amazing thing about the camera is clicking portraits. As in, if you click a portrait, the detail is not at all lost if you crop out the picture till the eyelash of the person and still you retain a full res picture. So that is a great news for those upcoming photographers because they don’t need to go really close to the eye to get an eye macro but instead just click the picture and just crop it out!

This time they have also given the options of bracketing which is used mainly for HDR pictures. People know are used to photography terms might also be familiar with HDR photography. Also, they have given the option of interval mode which can be used for time lapse or high speed photography.

As per the animations and the UI design, I am guessing that the whole camera app is Qt Quick based. The animations were really smooth, the scrolling was fast.

Shutter lag on the prototype of 808 was of 0.09 seconds as per another official there. Not a very good news as per the competition but photography wise its not bad at all. The focal length to click macro is of 15 cms which is a downgrade from N8 which had 10 cms. That means that macro shots on N8 can still get closer. I guess this can be solved by software tweaking.

Other than all this, there is a support of secure NFC on 808. Not sure what secure makes a difference than the normal ones, but thats what he said. Vesa also was talking about the Maps 2.0 update on 808 which is also rolled out for other Symbian Belle devices which shows the geotagged pictures on the maps itself and how you can turn off that feature if you don’t like it.
Conclusion: The device is a delight to handle and camera is mind-blowing. I could have wrote more if some of the devices there wouldn’t have buggy and would have been updated to the latest firmware update. Some one was also questioning about why was PureView being worked on Symbian instead of WP and the answer was pretty obvious, the PureView has been worked on since 5 years and WP was not thought about that time. So the success of this phone is decided either by the price or the future of the updates on Symbian.

What do you think about the 808?
Any other questions regarding the event?
Please let me know in the comments. Thank you.