Here's why that Huawei photo could never come from a smartphone camera


huawei p9 dual camera leica

Rafi Letzter/Tech Insider

Huawei, the Chinese smartphone company, got caught Monday using a photo taken with at least $4,500 worth of DSLR equipment to promote the camera in its Huawei P9 smartphone. (They've since taken down the post.)

Here's the deal: The P9 is a pretty good Android smartphone. In general, it falls somewhere in the middle of the quality pack in terms of flagships.

The device's one standout feature is its Leica-branded dual-camera system. It's not the best smartphone camera in the world, falling well short of industry leaders like the Samsung Galaxy S7 and iPhone 6s Plus.

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But Huawei has touted the phone's image quality anyway. And the dual cameras do imbue this device one superpower: It can sense depth and blur backgrounds of nearby objects to give the illusion of a DSLR's lens. On Huawei's site the company calls this "professional camera like photo quality."

However, that's a very different thing from shooting images of the kind that actually come from professional cameras. Here are all the ways you can tell Huawei's ad photo didn't come from a smartphone.