When I attended the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas earlier this month, I shot photos exclusively with my new iPhone.
I took pictures of some of the people I interviewed and of some of the products I saw for blog posts and to send to Twitter. And I used it to shoot photos of the sights of Vegas to share with my wife and kids.
Thanks to my smartphone, I didn't have to lug around a separate camera. From the device itself, I could email photos or send them to the blog without having to upload them to my PC first. And in some cases, I edited the pictures directly on my phone before sharing or uploading them.
I've long been a fan of using a smartphone for my camera. I love using programs like Hipstamatic to take retro-looking shots, and love how quickly I can share pictures with family and friends using the Facebook and Twitter apps or the Photo Stream feature.
So I'm well aware of the advantages of smartphones as cameras. But I won't be getting rid of my digital cameras any time soon. In fact, I'm in the market for another one.
I purchased two cameras for Christmas in 2011, a point-and-shoot for my son and a digital SLR for my wife. The cameras replaced two older ones that we'd used for years.
Since then, we've taken literally thousands of pictures with our new cameras. We've used them on family vacations. We've used them at our kids' school functions. And we've used them at family events.
As much as I like my iPhone's camera, I often put it aside when I want to record moments for posterity. Instead, I still lug around my wife's heavy DSLR, a Canon Eos 60D, when we go hiking. And I'd often take along my son's camera too -- until recently, when the camera was stolen. Since then, my son and I have both missed having it.
His camera, a Sony Cyber-shot, was a great little device. It was nearly as small as my iPhone, so it was easy to carry around. It's pictures weren't as good as those I'd take on my wife's 60D, but they were better than what I could take on my iPhone. Unlike the iPhone, the Sony had a five-times optical zoom.
The Sony was more versatile than our 60D. My wife and I haven't yet invested in a collection of lenses for the 60D, and the one we typically use doesn't have wide-angle view. So it can be hard to capture a group of people, say, or a panorama. For those shots, I reached for my son's Sony.
Now I'm shopping for a replacement for that camera. Sony no longer makes the model that was stolen, but I have a lot of options.
At Best Buy, I found numerous models that, like my son's camera, are ultra-slim and priced under $200. Sony has a model similar to my son's that, for about $180, has a 10-times optical zoom.
But I'm intrigued by some of the newer camera options. Samsung, for example, offers a camera for the same price as the Sony that has a built-in Wi-Fi radio. That would make it easy for me to share photos without having to first upload them to my computer, or allow me to transfer them to my computer without having to remove the card from the camera.
I'm also interested in checking out some of the new Android-based cameras. I'm not sure I need to have a full operating system, but I like the idea of being able to shoot and edit with the same apps I use on smartphones.
Regardless what I ultimately choose, you better believe I'll be buying another camera. Because as much as I like and appreciate taking pictures on my iPhone, it doesn't beat having a stand-alone camera.
Contact Troy Wolverton at 408-840-4285 or email@example.com. Follow him at www.mercurynews.com/troy-wolverton or Twitter.com/troywolv.