Trending February 2024 # How Long Do Wireless Keyboard Batteries Last? # Suggested March 2024 # Top 2 Popular

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Although wireless peripherals are more convenient and mess-free, they are plagued with an issue of limited battery life!

The wireless keyboard owners would know the batteries hardly last a few months to a few years.

Therefore, be careful about what wireless keyboard brand you choose and how long their batteries last.

The wireless keyboards use rechargeable Lithium-ion or alkaline batteries that last between 3 months to a few years or more when you use the device in moderation.

Moreover, the keyboard using primary AA batteries would deplete more quickly, requiring frequent replacements.

Read on to find out how long your wireless keyboard brand battery will last and whether you can extend its life.

How Long do Wireless Keyboard Batteries Last?

There is no doubt that wireless keyboards are more comfortable and more practical than regular keyboards.

You can remotely connect it to the PC or laptop and use it almost anywhere. However, the wireless peripheral is only as good until its batteries last.

Generally, the wireless keyboard batteries would last between 3 to 36 months, with one rechargeable battery lasting 150 to 190 hours on one charge, depending on the makers and brand.

Therefore, you need to be wary about the wireless keyboard (brand) you use, the type of batteries it employs, and whether they are rechargeable.

Please see the table below to compare the battery life of various keyboard brands.

BrandBattery LifeSpecification

Logitech MK2953 yearsIt uses 2 AAA batteries with longer battery lifespan.

Razer’s Black Widow2-3 yearsThe batteries last 192 hours before recharging

CORSAIR K100 AIR WIRELESS2-3 yearsUp to 50 hours with RGB effects or 200 hours with backlighting off

SteelSeries Apex Pro1 year or moreThe battery would last 30-40 hours before recharging.

Redragon k596 Vishnu1-2 yearsThe battery lasts 10 hours before requring a recharge.

However, the wireless keyboard’s battery life would depend on the usage and enabled features.

The keyboard that sees continuous usage of 6 hours or more would drain the battery quickly, requiring frequent recharges. Similarly, enabling backlighting and RGBs will drain the batteries more quickly.

Modern gaming wireless keyboards from Redragon, Logitech, and Razer often have extra features enabled, which may consume more power.

Generally, these keyboards require recharging batteries every 1 to 3 days and replacements every 1 to 2 years.

On the other hand, the Magic keyboard battery should last about a month, but older Apple keyboards would hardly last a few days.

The secret behind Magic keyboard batteries lasting significantly longer than other brands is its ability to efficiently use the battery, enable battery-saving mode, and reduce power consumption on extra features like lighting.

Why do Batteries in Wireless Keyboards drain so fast?

As previously mentioned, many reasons may cause wireless keyboard batteries to drain faster.

Here are a few reasons why your wireless keyboard battery drains quickly.

1. User-specific Activity

Some user-specific activities, such as gaming and continuous keyboard use, may cause the peripheral’s battery to drain faster.

The wireless keyboard battery would usually require recharging every 2 to 3 days, but relentlessly using the keyboard will drain it quickly, requiring a frequent recharge.

The battery will require frequent recharging as it ages, which may drain it more quickly.

2. Extra Enabled Features

Modern wireless keyboards have extra features such as keyboard backlighting and RGB lighting.

Enabling these features every time you use the keyboard will consume more power, requiring frequent recharging.

Some keyboards allow dimming the lighting or turning it off after specific activity to preserve battery life.

3. Bluetooth Interference

Continuous Bluetooth interference from other wireless devices may drain the keyboard’s battery life.

Similarly, enabling high polling rates and LED effects may drain the battery quickly when you have a low-quality keyboard.

When moderately used, the wireless keyboard batteries would last longer.

However, you must adopt tips to use the wireless keyboard effectively and reduce excess battery consumption.

Tips to Extend Battery Life in Wireless Keyboard

Here are some proven tips to help save your wireless keyboard’s battery from draining.

1. Turn off the Device

Turning off the wireless keyboard during inactivity will prevent unnecessary device standby time.

Moreover, it will prevent the device from continuously turning on from accidental typing on the keypad and bumps when traveling.

2. Restrict Keyboard-Intensive Activities

Limiting keyboard-intensive activities such as typing to only a couple of hours a day will help save batteries from draining.

Similarly, limiting gaming activity relying on typing keys will also help save the battery’s shelf life.

3. Turn off RGBs and Backlighting

Use the dedicated software provided by the keyboard manufacturers to turn off RGBs and backlighting.

Otherwise, you can dim the light or even automate it to turn off after some time of inactivity, especially the Magic keyboard.

4. Keep the Peripheral Close to the PC

Shortening the distance between the PC and the wireless keyboard will prevent incessant interference from draining the battery.

Unlike wired devices, wireless devices need to be in close range of the device.

5. Keep Away From Metal Objects/Surface

Metal objects or surfaces such as smartphones, speakers, and metal tools interfere with Bluetooth and RF signals.

Clean your desk space of all metal objects to solve this problem.

6. Invest in Quality Peripherals

Always buy quality wireless keyboards with longer battery shelf life, dedicated software, and a warranty.

Using good wireless keyboards will help prevent batteries from draining quickly.

How to Check the Battery Life of a Wireless Keyboard?

Monitoring the battery life is a great idea to keep a tab on the wireless keyboard’s power consumption.

In fact, most wireless keyboard makers provide dedicated software to assess battery life and health.

KeyboardBattery Status

RazerCheck the battery indicator color to determine the battery status. Green indicates charged, yellow indicates low, and red indicates depleted.

LogitechOpen the built-in Logitech device software on your PC or laptop and check the dashboard to find the battery status.

3-Red Flashes indicate less than 25%

Otherwise, you can check the wireless device’s settings (Windows 10 and Mac) to assess the battery life.

Conclusion

Wireless keyboards are plagued with limited battery life and problems solely caused by them.

Therefore, always buy quality wireless peripherals from a reputed brand and use power-saving tips to extend the battery life.

Follow this guide to keep track of your wireless keyboard usage and battery life on the go.

You're reading How Long Do Wireless Keyboard Batteries Last?

How Long Do Windows Updates Take? Easy Tool To Find Out

How Long Do Windows Updates Take? Easy Tool to Find Out Use a tool to get the info you want

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If you ever wondered how long it takes for a Windows update to install, there is now a way you can find out.

This method does not involve using the stopwatch tool to time the process, instead, you can make use of some dedicated software.

ViveTool is available for all users and all you have to do in order to get it is to head on over to GitHub.

This article will show you how exactly you can use this tool to time Windows 11 updates installations.

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INSTALL BY CLICKING THE DOWNLOAD FILE

To fix Windows PC system issues, you will need a dedicated tool

Fortect is a tool that does not simply cleans up your PC, but has a repository with several millions of Windows System files stored in their initial version. When your PC encounters a problem, Fortect will fix it for you, by replacing bad files with fresh versions. To fix your current PC issue, here are the steps you need to take:

Download Fortect and install it on your PC.

Start the tool’s scanning process to look for corrupt files that are the source of your problem

Fortect has been downloaded by

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readers this month.

Here is a question that we are sure many of you have asked at a certain point in time: how long does it really take for Windows to download and install an update?

We are, of course, talking about Windows 11, as we can all remember that Windows 10 took a heavy time toll when updates were available.

At the Windows 11 launch event, Panos Panay mentioned that Windows updates are 40% quicker to download, compared to the previous OS, and also install faster.

Read on to find out how long a Windows Update takes on Windows 10 or 11.

Instead of timing these actions with the built-in stopwatch, as some do, having the system show you this information would be a more than welcome feature.

But while Microsoft hasn’t included such an integration yet, know that there is still a way you can find out how long a Windows update will take to install.

Windows 11 can actually predict how much time it will take to install available updates. And although that feature is not yet available to all Insiders, you can enable it relatively simply using the ViveTool app.

This process is easy, will take up only a few minutes of your time, and after you install it you will be able to check the estimated updates installation time in the Windows 11 operating system.

Here’s how you use this tool:

Download the ViveTool from the GitHub website.

After you finished downloading, extract the archive into a folder.

Open the Windows Terminal as an Administrator on your Windows 11 computer, then go to the folder where you have extracted the downloaded tool and run it.

Use the following command:

ViVeTool addconfig 25704915 2

5. Restart your computer for the changes to apply.

When Windows 11 prompts you to restart the system to apply patches, open the Start menu and press the power button. You will see the approximate installation time next to Shut Down and Restart buttons.

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How Does Wireless Charging Work?

Wireless charging lets you charge up your gadgets without having to plug in a USB cable. It’s pretty neat, but how does it actually work? Why even bother? What are the downsides? 

We’ll tackle everything you need to know about how wireless charging works right here. Soon you’ll forget what all that wire clutter was like!

Table of Contents

A Matter Of Induction, My Dear Watt(son)

Generally, wireless chargers use a property of magnetism and electricity known as “induction” charging. Basically, electric current is converted into a magnetic field. This field then induces an electric current in the device you want to charge.

That’s a bit of an oversimplification, but it’s essentially what happens in the wireless charging process. There are two coils, one in each device, that convert the energy from one form to another.

This is the most common form of wireless charging you’re likely to find in personal gadgets such as smartphones or smart watches. Induction charging only works over very short distances. Usually 10mm or less. So although the power is “wireless” you usually need to set the device down on some sort of charging pad for the power to flow. Induction chargers such as these use low frequency signals to move power from the charger to the device.

The Resonant Alternative

It’s a futuristic idea, but electrical pioneer Nikola Tesla was doing it more than a century ago. Had history gone in a slightly different direction, wireless electricity might have been the standard way of doing things today.

A Two-Horse Race

There are different approaches to how wireless charging works, each with their own pros and cons. Different companies have different visions as to how we all want to use wireless power in daily life. This has given rise to multiple standards for wireless charging and, as you’ve probably guessed, these standards don’t inter-operate.

Qi wireless chargers use the short-range induction method and this is what you’ll find in most personal devices that charge wirelessly.

The AirFuel standard uses the long-range resonant method and you’re not likely to find it built into your gadgets quite yet. However, you can buy special charging cases for smartphones that add AirFuel capability to them.

Faster! Faster!

One thing you may notice about wireless charging, regardless of the standard, is that they don’t offer that much power. Fast-charging has become pretty much the standard when using a cable. Modern USB-C smartphones and laptops can often accept anything between 40 and 60 watts. Using USB-C Power Delivery, you can actually move 100W of power over a USB-C cable, but not current lithium ion batteries in a phone can accept that.

Qi or AirFuel chargers don’t offer nearly as much power, but both standards are evolving. At the time of writing, 40W wireless fast charging has started to enter the market and AirFuel hopes to reach 100W at some point in the future. We can also expect battery technology to improve, making it easier to charge devices more quickly. 

However, as of right now, one major downside of wireless charging is that it’s slower than using a direct wire connection and it can’t actively power devices that need even a moderate amount of power to work.

One Charger To Rule Them All

So anyone with a Qi device can simply put it on your pad and charge up. That’s cool, but the real killer feature is the ability to charge multiple devices on the same charging pad at the same time. You need a charger with one coil for each device you want to charge. 

For example, “triple chargers” have three coils and therefore three charging spots. You can put three devices next to each other and have them charge at the same time. That can be a pretty elegant solution. For example, if you place a triple charger on a side table in your living room, it’s a central place where people can put their devices.

Devices That Only Charge Wirelessly

Most devices that charge wirelessly, such as smartphones, also give you the option of wired charging. However, there are some devices that only let you charge them wirelessly. Smartwatches are one example of this and when you think about it, it makes sense. 

If you want to create a device that’s truly dust and waterproof, having a bunch of ports can be a pain. Not to mention that small devices such as wireless buds or smartwatches often don’t have space for standard connectors anyway. 

How does wireless charging work on larger devices? While there are as yet no phones, tablets or laptops that we are aware of with exclusive wireless charging don’t assume it will never happen. A completely sealed device that uses only wireless communication and charging would open up new doors when it comes to ruggedization and design.

Phones & Power Banks That Provide Wireless Charging

Wireless chargers themselves have gone wireless in the sense that you can now get power banks and even smartphones that can charge devices wirelessly using the Qi standard. 

Smartphones such as the Note 10+ have a feature known as “Wireless Powershare” and it’s very handy for charging devices such as wireless earbuds or smartwatches. Wireless power banks are of course also useful for that use case, but it also brings up the interesting possibility of sticking your phone to the power bank and temporarily using it as one cable-free hunk.

A Wireless Future

Short-range Qi induction charging is certainly here to stay, but we’ve seen some impressive demonstrations of long range charging using the resonance method. Fitting an LCD TV with a receiver coil, simply bringing it within range of another coil installed within a wall will power it on. 

With both power and data transfer possible wirelessly, there are new avenues product designers can take. We might be heading for an interesting future of devices that always have power, don’t need to be opened and in some cases may no longer need batteries to operate.

Of course, it will be some time until long range wireless power becomes the norm. You can certainly expect quite a bit of pushback as well. There’s already plenty of (usually unwarranted) concerns about electromagnetic radiation technologies such as 5G causing health issues or environmental problems. We expect the same sorts of complaints to arise when long-range wireless power transmission becomes more common. 

How To Monetize Instagram Page In The Long Run

It’s 2023, and Instagram is not just a fancy photo-sharing platform anymore. It has the potential to do so much more. People spend hours and hours on Instagram every day, just scrolling and consuming content. And right opposite to that, there’s a whole new world, a world of people making content for people to consume; a world where people earn money through Instagram. Now it’s up to you to decide which side of the coin you want to be. Why not both?

Here is How to Monetize Instagram Page 1. Connect with a Niche with Clarity:

This is the most fundamental, the simplest, yet the trickiest part. The requirement is simple. Select a niche that suits you the best, and who better to talk about you than yourself? But often, people get diverted by the shining light of the trendy online world and go for successful niches, but something with which they have no previous interactions or experience.

Brands usually connect with people for promotions of other activities if they are genuine and authentic, and think they understand that niche and space perfectly. Such accounts can be asked to be the face of brands and can be approached for various work opportunities, and the possibilities are endless.

So ask yourself the right questions, get your Niche clarity, and monetization opportunities will automatically come your way.

2. Route your followers to your source:

Instagram is a great way to express yourself. Once a genuine connection with your followers is established, they would usually consume whatever type of content comes their way from that particular account.

So if you have a monetization source outside your Instagram, you can use them in a great combination with this platform and route your followers there. This source can be your blog, your email list, your YouTube channel, your e-commerce website, etc.

Have an announcement post made on Instagram before your next blog, YouTube video, or any new product launch, and build up the anticipation. And in later stages, use the platform to showcase the crowd reaction, testimonials, takeaways, and any other thing related to it.

Smartly use the ‘Link in Bio’ feature and have CTAs in all your posts and stories. And in the case of a well-established page with decent followers, use the Swipe Up feature in stories.

Instagram, as a platform, is a really good partner for other platforms. Use it smartly to boost your monetization.

3. The Influencer Way:

The path toward a successful influencer is a long one. It requires consistency, quality content, providing value/entertainment to the followers, and so much more. But once there, your account can be monetized to the last post, story, Reel, or IGTV video.

4. Make your Profile a Portfolio:

As an artist or as a part of any sort of creative field, your Instagram profile can be made into an attractive portfolio featuring your best works. The profile link then can be sent in case of an interview, or any work request. These work really well in favour of:

Writers to showcase their writing style or their copies/content

Designers to show their work

Models/actors to showcase their photoshoot or clippings

Content Creators to upload their edits, videos, etc.

Musicians showcase their songs, covers, or albums.

Or any other artist to showcase their art of any kind.

So plan your Instagram feed to look attractive, and make your working portfolio earn through the platform.

5. Instagram Shopping:

Instagram Shopping came as a great boon to product and service pages on Instagram. Even without the feature, Instagram can be used as a catalogue to showcase your products and services, with a detailed description to go with it. You can either get customer details through DMs and make a transaction or route them to your website or payment gateway for conversion.

With the Instagram Shopping feature, the job has become much easier, and the account is monetized thoroughly. Even though the accessibility of the product is unlocked with certain requirements, the feature is a boon for product-based brands.

With each product post that you upload, you can have a tag, which takes them to a product page containing product descriptions, prices, images, and a link that routes them to the purchase page. So get going, set up your shopping page, and explore!

6. Consulting/Coaching:

Skilled at something? Know something that an average user does? Have years of experience in a particular field? Then why keep all that knowledge within yourself? Coaching and consulting is a booming business offline, and taking it online can elevate this to a whole new level.

People are always looking to upskill and get better at their field, and if you think you can provide value through your content, go for it. Sell your courses, have timing slots for your consultation, make videos on FAQs and provide value; people love content that helps them understand something better.

So hop on the digital train and start your online consulting and coaching business right away.

Conclusion

To all the people thinking Social Scrolling is an empty addiction that can lead to nothing, well, use the scrolling the right way, and you have a whole new world waiting for you.

There isn’t anything extra that you have to do, just be yourself, use your passion, skill, and experience, and earn in the Digital world. Instagram monetization can make it happen!

When was the last time you spent money through Instagram?

Heaven’s Vault Preview: Translating Long

I’m agonizing over a translation. What I’d thought was a simple piece of driftwood washed up on the riverbank is now a test, of sorts. The wood is old, worn down, but still there are remnants of symbols, letters in a language I’ve only seen twice before—and it’s my job to discern the intent. Where did this wood come from? Why did someone painstakingly carve letters into it?

Grasping at straws, I mutter something about “Wind” and plug that in as the translation. It doesn’t seem like a perfect fit, but…well, sometimes in Heaven’s Vault you just have to go with your gut.

Move over, Lara

IDG / Hayden Dingman

There’s something about Inkle’s games though, the way every tiny choice branches in a dozen different ways, the way the Ink Engine resurfaces small decisions in interesting ways. At GDC, Inkle’s Jon Ingold told me he’d seen four people run the demo and it played out four different ways. Having now run the demo four times myself, I believe him.

But even where the framework is the same, context can differ wildly. As you approach the gate into the ruins, an ivy-covered placard on the wall beckons. It’s likely the first translation players encounter in this build, and a relatively simple one, only three words. Still, it’s in a language wholly foreign—because it’s invented. As Inkle’s Joseph Humfrey told me last year, “You’re sort-of doing the process an archaeologist would if they looked at cuneiform.”

IDG / Hayden Dingman

Either works, and either is perfectly valid. There’s what looks like a greenhouse inside the ruins, and the area is obviously overflowing with plant life. “Garden” fits. But there’s also a vaguely religious-looking statue in the main courtyard, and further in the player encounters what seems like graves. “Temple,” then? Or hmm, perhaps they’re not graves but memorials. In that case, maybe garden is correct?

And yet it matters a lot. If the player approaches the ruins first and foremost as a temple, obviously any items within are infused with religious meaning. The aforementioned statue? Probably a god of some sort. Graves? That’d probably make this a cemetery of some sort. An innocuous carving of an eagle on the wall suddenly has to fit within the religious framework, and later translations might skew in that direction. A player might choose “eternity” over plain ol’ “death” for instance, hypothesizing an object has a loftier meaning.

IDG / Hayden Dingman

Maybe the player doesn’t even spot this translation at all. I didn’t, my first time. There’s a path around the side, and I made a beeline for it—assuming, rightfully, that the gate was locked. Thus I missed both “Temple” and “Garden,” relying on my own instincts to tell me the story of these ruins.

One choice, three different experiences. This is the magic of the Ink Engine: Small choices, so small they’re insignificant, that still manage to have widespread repercussions because they affect the way the player thinks. Temple, garden, or no context at all, it doesn’t affect how events play out, but it affects the context in which those events take place, and thus in some small way it affects everything.

IDG / Hayden Dingman

There are more obvious constraints too. The demo ends with a resurrection, of sorts. Turns out the graves/memorials/whatever are actually projectors of some sort, and once powered are able to summon the preserved consciousness of the deceased. A conversation ensues, with the person not-wholly-aware they’re long dead and Aliya dancing around that fact to extract information.

Bottom line

What’s most amazing about Heaven’s Vault though is that every path feels valid. Having now gone through the demo four times, as I said, I’ve come away each time feeling like “Well, actually maybe that was the correct one.” Translations that seemed ludicrous my first time through seem less outlandish in a different light, and occasionally there’s a eureka moment where new information changes the context of the old and prompts a reexamination of all clues to date.

It’s—and I don’t say this lightly—like nothing I’ve ever played before. Bound for a niche audience of linguistics wannabes maybe, but rarely has a game provoked so much emotional investment from me with a handful of scribbled symbols. Safe to say Heaven’s Vault is one of my most anticipated games of 2023, and Inkle one of the most exciting studios working today.

Opinion: How Long Before An Iphone Completely Replaces Standalone Cameras?

There’s a photographer’s saying that the best camera is the one you have on you at the time. It’s no use having the best pro DSLR in the world if it’s sitting at home when you spot a photo opp.

For many, an iPhone is their only camera. But there are still many others who have one or more standalone cameras – myself among them. What is it those cameras can do that the iPhone can’t, and how long before an iPhone is the only camera we’ll ever need … ?

Shallow depth of field

Until recently, there was one immediate answer: only a standalone camera could offer shallow depth of field. The iPhone could do this in very limited circumstances, but for the most part if you wanted what is colloquially known as bokeh effect, you needed to use a camera with a larger sensor.

With the iPhone 7 Plus, of course, Apple introduced Portrait mode, which offers a shallow depth of field effect on photos taken with the 2x lens. The effect is artificial, and in beta form it’s far from perfect.

If you compare these two photos taken by my friend Julian Perry, you’ll see exactly what I mean. This is a normal shot, with the blur created naturally by the lens as per my earlier demonstration).

If we zoom in on the left-hand edge of the cup, the background blur is limited, but all is fine.

Here’s the same shot with the beta Portrait mode:

Much more background blur, but if you look closely at the left hand edge of the coffee cup in the Portrait mode shot, there’s a very obviously artificial break.

The software copes much better in some shots, but there’s still quite an artificial look to the bokeh at present. While it tries to make the focus fall off gradually, as with the real thing, it’s so far pretty crude.

But that’s why Apple labels it a beta. It will improve, and it will – at some point within the next few years – reach the point where the artificial effect is completely indistinguishable from the natural one. Here’s an example of the real thing, with graduated focus fall-off over quite a short distance:

Now sure, professional photographers will point out that different lenses have different bokeh, and you may sometimes choose a lens for the quality of the bokeh. But there’s also no reason why Apple can’t emulate different lens effects in software. So this argument for a standalone camera will, in time, disappear.

Macro shots

Extreme close-up shots require a macro lens: a lens which not only has an extremely shallow depth of field, but can also focus at extremely short distances. In this shot, for example, I had the lens literally a couple of centimetres away from the surface of the eye.

This isn’t something current-generation iPhone cameras can do, but they can focus at about twice that distance, and Apple could apply a more extreme artificial bokeh effect to get the extremely shallow DOF.

Again, then, Apple isn’t there yet, but I don’t see this as an enormous challenge.

Long exposure (static shots)

Sometimes, for creative reasons, you’ll want to have a long exposure – where the shutter remains open longer than usual, like this 30-second exposure on a bridge over a road.

A 30-second exposure is also my default setting for ‘blue hour’ shots – the time around 30-40 minutes after sunset when the sky takes on a blue glow. Only a long exposure can capture this.

I adore the blue hour, especially if I can get up high, so I take a lot of these.

On a standard camera, these type of shots are taken by leaving the sensitivity of the sensor* at 100iso – the sensitivity normally used for a shot taken in bright light – and leaving the mechanical shutter open a long time to acquire the amount of light needed. This is not something the iPhone – with its purely electronic shutter – can do.

But again, this is solvable by software. The iPhone can’t do it today, but there’s no reason a future one couldn’t do it via stacked shots if the demand is there and Apple throws enough effort at it.

Long exposure (panning shots)

But there’s a second situation where you may want a long exposure – when you want to give a sense of movement.

Here, you will track the moving subject with the lens – like this motorcycle – and use a long exposure to create motion-blur in the background. This is known as panning, and typically these exposures will be in the 1/4 second to 1/30th second range.

This was a sunny day, so to avoid the long exposure letting in too much light I had to reduce the aperture. This is something a fixed-aperture lens like the iPhone can’t do.

In principle, this one too could be handled by software, taking rapidly-stacked exposures and then using Portrait-style processing to separate subject from background to artificially add motion-blur to the background. It is, though, a whole different order of complexity! I can’t see this one happening anytime soon.

Low light

The final major photographic challenge is low light photos in general. The iPhone has better low-light performance than almost any other smartphone camera on the market, but it’s still leagues away from a professional DSLR.

I mentioned above that a camera sensor has a fixed level of sensitivity, and if you want to capture more light for any given shutter speed and aperture, you have to amplify the signal from that sensor. But amplifying the signal has a major downside: you also amplify all the ‘noise’ in the image. Here’s an iPhone shot taken in low light:

It looks kind of ok when viewed in a very small size like that, but if we take a closer look at the sky, we can see that the noise is horrendous.

For static photos, we can use the stacked shot approach described above, but that isn’t any use for a shot like this, where we’re moving.

It’s also no use for the most common requirement of a low-light shot: photographing people at parties, concerts, bars and so on. People are not very good at remaining perfectly still for 30 seconds, even without any alcohol involved …

One of the key features that distinguishes a professional DSLR from a cheaper camera is the low-light performance offered. As I say, you have to amplify the signal from the sensor to achieve high ISO settings, but a pro camera copes with this well. This was a shot taken in dark conditions at 6400iso (amplified x64) on a Nikon D3, a pro body:

If we go in as close as I did on the shot from the plane, you can see there is some noise, but it’s in a completely different league.

(The focus looks a little soft as I’ve left the RAW shot unsharpened to avoid adding any sharpening artifacts. If you shoot in JPEG, sharpening is added in-camera.)

This is actually the toughest challenge for Apple to solve. For any given level of technical know-how applied by a manufacturer, the larger the sensor, the lower the noise level. In the better DSLRs, known as full-frame cameras, there’s room for a large sensor – the same size as a 35mm negative. You only find these in pro bodies like the Nikon D5 and Canon 1DX, plus prosumer bodies like the Nikon D750 and Canon 6D.

More portable mirrorless cameras, like the Sony a6000 and its more expensive 4K-shooting brother the a6300, have smaller but still decent-sized APS-C sensors. I’m happy enough with the performance of my Sony a6000 that I use it as my standard travel camera these days, leaving my Nikon D3 at home.

Other factors

Professional photographers and real enthusiasts would, of course, raise a whole bunch of additional differences between a cameraphone and a DSLR – not least among them removable, high-capacity storage. But for the vast majority of amateur shooters, I think these five factors are the ones that count. I could see Apple solving the first three. The fourth and fifth, though, I think may take very much longer.

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