The iPhone is actually the most popular “camera” on flickr. And by a wide margin too. That said it takes awful photos. Like unbelievably, ridiculously awful. And it’s actually among the very best camera-phones. Camera phones have much worse actual resolution, especially in less than ideal lighting conditions, worse color depth, dynamic range, noise artifacts… The only thing they have going for them is portability and connectedness. And I would claim that the latter is about the determining factor in getting photos from on a device to out into the world where everyone can see them.
The question is then what are my options for easily getting photos off a real camera. And I have the feeling that this will be of temporary use given the number of cameras which are starting to incorporate connected features. But anyways, for the moment:
At the moment there are three ways of getting photos off your camera without resorting to taking out the storage or using wires. The best is wifi/cell data inside the camera, but this is still limited as of the moment. Next we have the dongles, these plug into one port or another on the camera and can then connect to some wireless network. I am avoiding these at the moment because I don’t want a dongle hanging off of or sticking out of my camera. These also tend to be specific to a camera manufacturer or even a specific camera model. Finally we have the networked flash storage. These are memory cards which connect to wireless networks. This was started by Eye-Fi, but by now numerous other manufacturers are joining in. For me the real appeal is automation, reducing the number of steps between pressing the shutter button and having a photo online. And as far as automation is concerned eye-fi seems to still be leading the crowd, since one can set it up to transfer files automatically.
These methods of getting photos off the camera are slightly flexible in terms of where the images end up, but it’s still not great. Eye-Fi will automatically push photos onto my android phone (I imagine one can do the same with an iphone). And from there I actually have a number of options of moving the photo further along. First eye-fi offers an application, but the interface is kind of a pain to use, and requires windows (possible also osx, but in either case, no linux).