The 9th Soul

Motorola releases ZN5 camera phone combo

Posted in entertainment, internet news, technology by Fated Blue on November 4, 2008

Motorola’s still in the cell phone game despite what you might have heard. And they’ve upped their intensity today with the release of the MOTOZINE ZN5, the first camera phone to feature Kodak imaging technology.

I got a chance to play with the phone and for the money, it’s about the best camera phone available. The $200 phone, available on T-Mobile, sports a 5 megapixel camera, which really hasn’t been available at this price point before. But it’s not just the megapixels, it’s Kodak’s imaging technology that helps make the photos come out brilliant. Colors are bright and deep and the images maintain their quality even after their blown up.

Motorola has worked hard to make taking photos and moving them afterward extremely easy. The phone goes into camera mode once you slide open the camera lens. You shoot in landscape mode and you can immediately shoot again, as you would with a regular digital camera. The camera offers a Xenon flash, a digital zoom, red-eye reduction, a low light setting, three focus settings and five white balance settings. The phone comes with a SD card slot and a 1GB card.

One cool feature is the ability to make a panoramic picture by stitching three shots together. You just take a shot and then pan to the right and the phone will tell you when to take the next two shots. And then the camera turns it into one shot.

The phone also does a great job of moving pictures off the device. When in Wi-Fi range, you can quickly upload pictures to a Kodak Gallery online account using a share button. You can do it using the ZN5’s Edge connection but it’ll take a bit longer. Or you can move them over to your computer using a USB cord.

The ZN5 is a solid phone, not a surprise for Motorola, which included its CrystalTalk technology for better sound quality. This one phone won’t turn around Motorola’s fortunes single-handedly but it shows the company is still competing at a high level. For the cost of a digital camera, the ZN5 offers a similar level of imaging quality of a stand alone camera, giving people a chance to really consolidate two devices into one. I’m not sure how many people will actually do that but it at least gives you the confidence that the pictures you capture on your camera phone are worthy of sharing widely.

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