Originally Posted by bstring
What she is saying is the old adage, 'the best camera is the one you have with you'. The iPhone is an excellent choice, but this was not a discussion of which phone offers the best camera. It was about photography in general... I believe she was crediting a class of devices.
Oh come on. If she had named, say, the Kodak Instamatic as the snapshot camera of its era, would you interpret this as referring to a whole class of devices?
Originally Posted by k2director
The iPhone's camera is fine in daylight, but sucks for indoors shots, even the cameras on the 4S. I constantly get blur, and the camera's AUTO feature never seems to engage the flash, unless it's very very dark.
No real argument here, but you might like to check out the newish Jolly Rainbo 2X flash for Hipstamatic, especially with low-light-friendly "lenses" like Jimmy, Melodie, and (also newish) Lucas AB2. Make sure you switch the LED flash ON (by sliding the flash control all the way to the left). I have no idea how it works, but it actually takes pictures (most of the time: ymmv) without the horribly washed-out result you typically get with cell phone cameras
The "Clarity" filter on Camera+ can work wonders with seemingly underexposed images, as can the "FixDark" feature of PerfectlyClear.
With my less-than-steady hands, I get blurring too with low-light exposures. Many camera-replacement apps have anti-shake settings. I especially like the implementation of this feature in CameraSharp.
I suspect, in fact, that all the added possibilities provided by the hundreds of available photo apps might explain why Liebovitz says she's "still learning how to use mine." It probably also explains why the iPhone is by far the most popular camera (not just cell phone camera) on Flickr. With just a couple of apps -- say Camera+ and Photoforge 2 -- you've got a reasonably capable photo lab in your pocket.
I don't know enough to say whether or not the iPhone 4S camera is the best cell phone camera out there. Probably it's not. But it's the one people are really using, including, increasingly, serious photographers.