I’ve be rocking my Nokia Lumia Icon for a couple of weeks. I also jumped the gun and downloaded Windows Phone 8.1 beta and I’m having fun playing with all the new features, especially Cortana.
Still, probably the best feature of my device is the camera. It takes awesome photos with little to no effort. But I’ve still managed to discover a few gems that I thought I would share with you all just in case you’re interested in trying out Windows Phone, or want to unlock more of your Nokia Lumia’s camera potential.
1. Wake Phone with Camera button
Those ‘Once in a lifetime’ photo ops come, well…once in a lifetime. Our smartphones do everything, including take pictures. As a result the extra time it takes going from pulling your phone out of your pocket, purse, or bag, unlocking the phone, opening the camera, and finally snapping a pic can result in ‘missing the moment’.
The hard camera button located on the right side of all Windows Phones (under the Power button) can be used to wake the phone right into camera mode so you can quickly snap a picture to preserve that special moment forever. Simply press and hold the camera button while it’s locked to jump straight into the camera.
2. Use the Grid
One of the camera settings of any smartphone that I feel is most overlooked is turning on the grid. It simply helps you frame your shot to make sure the important aspects of a shot are highlighted. Additionally, the bars will make sure your shot is even, straight or level, especially if your taking photos of scenery.
3. 3 Ways to Focus
With Windows Phone devices, the hard camera button gives you three ways to focus:
1. Autofocus – by just pressing the camera button, the phone will quickly focus on the elements in the center of the shot before taking a photo.
2. Manual Focus – With most smartphones, you tap anywhere on the screen to can tell the camera where you want to focus. Pressing the hard camera button or the camera button on the screen will finish the job.
3. Press and Hold – You can also pre-focus on your image by lightly pressing and the hard camera button to “preview” your shot. Pressing the camera button all the way will actually take the shot.
4. Shoot first, zoom later
With most smartphones, you can use the “pinch” gesture to zoom in and out for the best shot. With Windows Phones, especially the high-powered, Nokia Lumia 1020, 1520, and Icon, you can take your shot with the regular zoom distance, then go back and zoom/frame the shot to your liking. This also helps for when you don’t want to miss that perfect shot opportunity because you’re messing with settings.
5. Auto Settings are fine
Speaking of messing with settings, the Nokia Lumia Pro Camera app professional settings on Nokia Windows Phones can be intimidating for casual smartphone users, especially if you want to quickly snap great pics.
That’s why Nokia with it’s dope camera technology made sure to give you the option of just going “all Auto everything” to take pro-level shots with little to no tweaking.
6. Use Camera to scan barcodes, books, CD’s & DVD’s, and translate text
In addition to just taking pictures, the Windows Phone camera can read, translate, and decode information. By pressing the magnifying glass button and activating ‘Bing Vision’ (for Windows Phone 8.1 users, open the camera app and go into settings/lenses to find Bing Vision).
With Bing Vision you can decode QR codes & Microsoft tags, read UPC barcodes, pull up information on a book, CD or DVD, or translate text just by holding the camera on the content.
7. Read the Manual
If taking pics with Nokia Lumia Pro Cam gets you pumped about taking photos and you want to start experimenting with all of the camera settings in the higer-end devices, be sure to use the in-phone and online resources.
Phone – Built right into the Nokia Pro Camera are some helpful tutorials that go over lighting, focus, white balance, shutter speed and more.
Online – If you’re looking for some example videos on how to get the most out of your Nokia Pro Cam, be sure to check out the online guide to see all the possibilities of your camera.
Even though I also have an iPhone and an Android, whenever I know I need a great camera, I make sure to pop my SIM card into my Nokia Lumia Icon to make sure I stay connected while getting some cool images in the meantime.
Disclosure: I received the device featured in this post at no charge for review/giveaway purposes. I was not compensated for this post and all opinions in this post are my own…Suckas