Do I need to upgrade my smartphone for better photographs?

I get asked this question frequently. The answer is it depends on how you want to use your pictures. 

I borrowed an iPhone 6 and took a few pictures to see how much the quality of the camera has improved.  The phone is seven generations behind the latest 14. I was pretty impressed, to be honest. The bumblebee came out quite well, but the lack of pixels limited the editing process. I wanted to highlight some of the details in the flowers, but the quality could have been better.

So, let’s get back to the question at hand. Do you need to upgrade your phone?

My Dad is 90 years old and has an iPhone 8 and it’s undoubtedly an improvement on the iPhone 6. The only reason I would upgrade his phone is screen size. We have yet to get as far as taking pictures, but he has mastered texting and WhatsApping, so clearly I’m very proud of him. Here is a picture of my Dad having his first lesson with you know who! I looked back at my iPhone 7 plus pictures, and the quality was good too. I use some of those pictures in my Smartphone Photography Workshops as examples of my work.

Reasons to upgrade:

  1. BATTERY POWER – The battery will wear down in time, and you will be forever charging the device.
  2. LOW LIGHT CAPABILITY: The capability of the newer phones is much better in low light. It’s practically impossible with the older models.
  3. REGULAR SOFTWARE UPDATES: These are crucial for security, bug fixes, and access to the latest features. If your current smartphone is no longer receiving software updates, it might leave your device vulnerable to security risks and limit your access to the latest apps and functionalities. Upgrading to a newer model ensures you stay up-to-date with the latest software advancements and enjoy a more secure experience.
  4. SOCIAL MEDIA AND WEBSITE: If you have read my previous blog, I talk about smartphone photography for creating images for websites. The quality and pixel quantity is crucial for sharp, well-presented pictures. It’s possible, as I’ve used an image from my old iPhone 6 project today, and it looks okay as a screensaver on my Apple Mac Pro, which has a 16″ screen, not bad at all, but you would be pushing it. My iPhone 13 Pro has done a really fab job and created stunning images as you would expect.


Deciding whether to upgrade your smartphone to the latest model requires careful consideration of your specific needs and priorities. While it’s tempting to upgrade, weighing the benefits against your budget and the functionality of your current device is essential. A newer model might be a worthy investment if your smartphone struggles to keep up with your daily tasks. However, if your current phone meets your needs and still performs well, there’s no rush to upgrade. Ultimately, your choice should be based on finding the right balance between your preferences, budget, and the technology that best suits your lifestyle.

If you would like to improve your photography skills, please get in touch and call Sally on 07824 628453 or reserve your place on one of our workshops

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