The iPhone 5 has refined hardware compared to the iPhone 4S.
Apple introduced the iPhone 5, as well as a colorful major upgrade to the iPod touch, during a special media event on Wednesday. The new hardware boasts notable upgrades for both devices with respect to the built-in camera hardware. The iPhone 5 has a refined version of the 8MP camera in the iPhone 4S, while the iPod touch gets a serious shot in the photographic arm with a 5MP autofocus camera. Both devices also get a backside-illuminated, 1.2MP, 720p FaceTime HD front-facing camera and a new automatic panorama shooting feature in the Camera app.
We thought it might be helpful to break down all the updates in more detail for the avid shutterbugs in our audience.
iPhone 5: 8 megapixels refined
The iPhone 4S had very respectable camera hardware. The front-facing camera was the same old VGA-quality FaceTime camera we knew from previous iOS devices, but the rear-facing 8MP "iSight" camera was one of the best on any smartphone we've ever tested. Apple not only increased the resolution over the iPhone 4's 5MP, but it did so while improving sensitivity to light by employing a backside-illuminated, full-well CMOS design. It coupled the sensor with a noise-reducing hybrid IR filter and a new five-element, f/2.4 autofocus lens.