I know the discussion here is focussed on real form-factor camcorders rather than mobile phones, but I want to discuss the oddities in the general technical implications. I.e. the same knowledge could be applied to other cameras.
This page documents the technical development of video recording capabilities in mobile phones. (The lastest version of that article is unfortunately lost due to Wikipedia Administrator Bbb23's practices, but the linked, lastest archived one is still good enough.)
In a nutshell:
(Abbreviation “pps” means: Pixels per second / pixel rate. Same pps's highlighted using same colour.)
- The first mobile phone with 720p@30fps (27648000 pps) was released in 2009.
- The first mobile phone with 720p@60fps (55296000 pps) was released in 2012 (3 years after 2009).
- The first mobile phone with 1080p@30fps (62208000 pps) was released in 2011 (2 years after 2009).
- The first mobile phone with 1080p@60fps (124416000 pps) (was released in 2013 (2 years after 2011).
- The first mobile phone with 2160p@30fps (248832000 pps) was released in 2013 (2 years after 2011).
- The first mobile phone with 1080p@120fps (248832000 pps) was released in 2015 (2 years after 2013).
- The first mobile phone with 2160p@60fps (497664000 pps) was released in 2017 (4 years after 2013).
- The first mobile phone with 1080p@240fps (497664000 pps) was released in 2017 (4 years after 2013).
- The first mobile phone with 2160p@120fps (995328000 pps) will be released in 2020 with Snapdragon 865.
I left 720p@240fps (221 million ppi) (appeared in late 2014) out, because it is lesser relevant for this scheme/explanation / in this case.
But I have observed the following inconsistencies, and I hope someone knows what could be the technical reasons for them:
- How come the jump from 2160p@30fps to 2160p@60fps took four years, while the previous big leaps (720p@30fps → 1080p@30fps → 2160p@30fps, 1080p@60fps) took two years?
- How come many phones over the years (e.g. late 2013-2017 Samsung flagships: Galaxy Note 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, S5, S6, S7, S8) could only record at 2160p@30fps and 1080p@60fps, despite their chipset performance must have had increased by at least twice from 2013 to 2017?
- How come many phones that could record at 2160p@30fps not record 1080p@120fps (but only 60fps) despite both 2160p@30fps and 1080p@120fps have the same pixel rate (248.832.000 pps)?
- How come the Galaxy S7, Note 7, S8 and Note 8 could record 720p@240fps (221.184.000 ppi), 2160p@30fps (248.832.000 ppi), but not 1080p@120fps (248.832.000 ppi)? (only 1080p@60fps, 124.416.000 ppi)
These oddities appear a bit contradictory to me.
Is it because the manufacturers were possibly lazy, or is it a mysterious technical limitation?
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