Smartphone Snapshots: Many Asians Share While Europeans Store
CREDIT: Nokia Camera School
New research shows that while most of the world uses mobile phones in place of digital cameras for snapping photos of friends and family, those of Asian descent are far more likely to share their photos than their European counterparts.
China topped the list of countries with the highest percentage of people who take photos with their phones at 85 percent, followed by Italy at 55 percent and Switzerland at 45 percent, according to a Cint survey commissioned by phone-maker Nokia of more than 8,000 people in China, the Philippines, the United States, Sweden, Singapore, India, Italy and Switzerland.
Why do they use a mobile phone and not a stand-alone camera? To capture situations quickly on-the-move, according to 70 percent of the people asked.
When it came to uploading photos directly to social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, Asian countries captured the top three spots: 68 percent of the respondents from the Philippines shared photos, around half of the respondents from India said they uploaded their photos directly to their favorite social sites and 38 percent of those in China reported doing so.
The most popular reason to share photos was feedback from their social circles. Around one-third of survey respondents said they find it rewarding to receive comments from their friends — and the more comments, the better.
In Asia, smartphone users are very active when it comes to taking and sharing photos, but it's a different story in Europe.
People in Switzerland and Sweden are critical of online sharing, believing that people tend to upload "quite embarrassing" photos when they probably shouldn’t, according to the survey.
Perhaps that attitude of censorship has made Europeans more privacy-conscious. As a group, Europeans are far more likely to download their phone photos to a computer at home rather than hit the "share to Facebook" button. At 44 percent, respondents in Italy were most likely to keep their photos private, followed by Switzerland at 42 percent and Sweden at 37 percent.
But attitudes toward sharing and privacy in Europe may be thawing. Bucking the overall regional trend, 30 percent of Swiss men between the ages of 15 and 25 upload photos to social media sites.
The trend toward instant sharing can only fuel the smartphone camera wars, and that's good news for smartphone photographers.
Apple's iPhone 4 cameras included big improvements over 3GS predecessors such as double cameras, 5-megapixel sensors and built-in flash. Verizon and Motorola released the newest in the Droid series, the X2 with an 8-megapixel camera that can shoot 720p HD video. HTC may raise the bar with its rumored 16-megapixel smartphone with a pair of LED flashes this summer, touting the unit as a real alternative to a digital camera.
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