looking back, looking forward: THE evolution of oppo’s smartphone Photography
In recent years, Oppo has quickly become one of the top smartphone brands not only in the philippines, but also in the entire globe. the fast rise of Oppo in the smartphone landscape can be attributed to its focus on mobile photography, particularly on ensuring that users will get good self-portraits. The evidence of OPPO’S emphasis on selfies can be seen on the software and hardware improvements that the company brought to its handsets in less than a decade. “the most frequently encountered problem by our customers is basically when they’re taking a selfie. They notice that they are not beautiful enough. Well, for the rear camera, the customers usually realize that it’s very difficult for them to take pictures at any time,” OPPO photography product manager Su Yu’s response when he was asked regarding customers’ complaints about taking photos with a smartphone. Listening to customer feedback such as these has become a strong foundation for Oppo’s research and development team (r&d) in addressing the problems in smartphone photography with innovative solutions.
“the current trend in rear cameras has become helpful for us in facilitating the development of front cameras. We’re not here just to improve the camera, but also to make up on the needs and enhance the experience of our users. If a particular technology is good for our customer and it improves the user’s experience, then definitely we will try to apply and develop that technology,” Oppo Hardware Director King bai added. In 2012, Oppo launched the U701 which featured beautify 1.0, the first built-in beautification technology on a smartphone. Now on its fourth iteration, beautify 4.0 brings together all of the enhancements that Oppo introduced to the technology through the years such as natural skin effect and customized beautification to the likes of the OPPO F3 and the OPPO F3 Plus.
Software aside, Oppo also invested in the research and development on the hardware level of its smartphone cameras. In 2013, the Chinese smartphone maker became the first to define the 80-degree selfie angle (dubbed as the “Golden Angle”) and big aperture with the launch of the Oppo r809t. 2013 was a year of rapid evolution in OPPO’S smartphone cameras: the R809T was followed by the Find 3 which made OPPO as the first company to use 6P lens, and the Find 7 which made the company as the first one to use blue glass, resulting in cleaner and more natural-looking photos by filtering out unnecessary lights.
Collaborating with renowned electronics company Sony, Oppo co-developed the Sony IMX214 sensor which was used on the Find 7. Oppo’s collaboration with Sony continued with the launch of the R9s which integrated the IMX398, designed to offer up to 40% faster focusing speed and better low-light performance. Apart from Sony, Oppo also worked with chipmaker Qualcomm. As a product of this partnership, the smartphone manufacturer is now introducing the Snapdragon 600 series to the r11. the integration of the Snapdragon 600 series brings to the r11 technologies such as Spectra 160 ISP and Hexagon Vector extensions (HVX), making it capable to shoot and process 20MP+ images with efficiency.
Proving the effectiveness of the enhancements that OPPO introduced to the software, optics, and image sensors of its handsets, the Chinese company successfully rose to become one of the top ten biggest smartphone brands in the world today. This success is not only reflected on the brand’s reputation, but also on the actual sales record of the company. Selling like hotcakes, the r9s became the best-selling Android smartphone in the first quarter of 2017, whereas the R11’s online sales volume in 40 minutes surpassed the combined online and offline sales volume of the r9s in one day. these scenarios serve as proofs of customers’ confidence in using OPPO handsets.
OPPO Hardware Director King Bai