You know that whole business about sliced bread–as in, this or that development being the “best thing since” the aforementioned subdivided sandwich-centric food item?

This generation may want to revise that line and insert “smartphone cameras” in sliced bread’s clichéd place. For a few years, my HTC Evo has taken photographs with remarkable clarity. It has been a convenient tool that has augmented my public relations work very, very well.

In fact, a few months ago, the device’s brilliance was reaffirmed in a contest sponsored by the Oak Park Development Corp. The organization chose a photo that I took last November, of a fog-shrouded park near my home, as the best of all submissions among amateurs in one particular category.

Now, I realize that the competition may not have been fierce, but no matter how you slice it, it’s a pretty darn cool shot, especially from something that I formerly associated with being useful only to make and receive phone calls.

Then, this past Saturday night, my appreciation for the HTC went up another big notch. In preparation for a news release and media outreach on a contest to name the “Big Smile”  illuminated over the front door of Children’s Dentistry of Forest Park, I ventured out about 10:30 p.m. to capture some images of the eye-catching sight.

First, I took photos with a Canon Rebel camera. Then, figuring it couldn’t hurt to take a few quick snaps with the HTC, I pulled that out and seconds later was back in my car and headed home.

After uploading photos to my laptop–most from the Canon Rebel and only a few from the HTC–I couldn’t tell the difference in quality. Then I asked my wife to see if she could pick out which photo came from which device.

Photo taken with the HTC Evo.

She has an excellent eye, has taught me much about photography over the years and I thought that if anyone could see something that I overlooked, it would be her.

She guessed three times, incorrectly, before I identified the HTC-generated photo in one series of five photos.

Clearly, there are limitations to what smartphones can do, both online and in print. But especially when it’s the difference between getting no image and having one that is serviceable–or even better–then the convenience of taking a few photos and then having them available to augment a media campaign is compelling.


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