iPhone App Allows its Camera to Record Video

By Richard Menta 12/13/07

As popular as the iPhone is and as good as the device is when compared to its competitors there are droves of young developers attempting to make it do more. And why not? The iPhone does run on Mac OS X, meaning it has tremendous potential. Natch, iPhone fans can't wait for Apple to add new features and this has sparked an underground market of hacks serving those in need of instant gratification.

The latest black market iPhone application is called Drunknbass and it turns the iPhone still camera into a video camera. Created by Monsters and Friends the application recognizes the fact that while the iPhone's 2.0 megapixel camera resolution may be mediocre for a still camera, it is excellent resolution for a consumer video camera. For example the $350 Canon DC210 digital camcorder uses as 680K pixel sensor chip (because a standard NTSC TV's resolution is only 525 scan lines horizontal), while the Canon's HD camcorder the $1,000 HV20 uses a 2.9 megapixel sensor. Even though the iPhone's display is not HD, a recorded file can be ported to Apple TV, which does handle HD.

The near finished Drunknbass apps allows the iPhone to record video up to 45 frames per second (your standard-def TV set handles 30 fps). A beta was just released, which allows the user to test the application for 5 seconds at 10 fps rate, and as the video to the right shows it does a very good job. It is not known if the finished version will allow 1280 x 720 recording. Of course, iPhone's camera has a cheap, low quality lens, doesn't have a zoom lens system or any convenient features like image stabilization, so overall quality still will won't compete with a real camcorder. But for that quick shot to email to friends the MPEG-4 compressed images offered by the iPhone will do quite well.

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