Smartphones with dual cameras such as Apple's iPhone 4 and Sprint's HTC EVO 4G are tremendously popular lately. But while these cellular handsets sport one lens that faces frontward and the other back, enabling mobile videoconferencing, they're still in the minority, and most offer only middling photographic resolutions. Thankfully for entrepreneurs who need a new headshot, product images for press kits or a steady stream of pictures to fuel their social media strategy, digital cameras are also adding new perspectives. See Samsung's new ST100 ($349.99) and ST600 ($329.99) , both launching in September, which offer twin LCD displays that promise to greatly aid in capturing the perfect shot.
Both models offer 14.2 megapixel photographic resolutions, letting you capture images suitable for use on the web, in print or blown up to larger poster sizes for deployment at events and speaking engagements. Equipped with so-called DualView technology, while neither allows for voice or video calling, the pair does boast 1.8-inch front-facing LCD screens which make it simpler to frame shots as well. As a result, snapping pictures or taping 720p high-definition videos (especially self portraits, group shots or video blogs and diaries) should prove that much more effortless. Because you can see what's happening and your position in the picture while either camera is actively trained upon you, it takes much of the guesswork out of playing shutterbug.
Offered in a sleek form factor, a range of colors and a variety of metallic finishes, the devices also look the part of professional shooters. They act the part almost as well, boasting 5X optical zoom, image stabilization technology and automatic brightness, color and scene mode adjustment. From self-timers to features that prompt photo subjects to simultaneously jump at a set time, expect a number of catchy built-in extras as well. Touch- and motion-sensing capabilities further make it possible to operate the devices just by tilting them or running your finger across their screens. Between face recognition capabilities, slide show options and a rear-mounted 3.5-inch LCD, both offer a full range of standard photographic options out of the box as well.
While it may not seem as cost-effective, convenient or sexy to be snapping photos with a standalone device vs. your mobile handset, practicality still demands that dedicated digital cameras be used for professional photo shoots. And given the inherent technical limitations and general lack of adjustable image controls found on the majority of smartphones, it's easy to justify the investment. Although the ST100 is slightly more expensive, note that it does sport an internal optical zoom that eliminates the need for an outward-bulging lens. Despite the fact that neither choice is liable to floor professional photographers, both models can still quickly empower business owners, resourceful community managers and hard-charging publicists to become amateur paparazzi overnight.