Should tablets have a camera on the back?

By on May 16, 2011, 12:00 PM

Have you ever wondered how many people actually take pictures with the camera that comes on the back of your typical tablet? I have always had a sneaky suspicion that this number is very low, and it turns out that I'm not the only one who thinks so. Furthermore, there's data to prove it.

Flickr counts the number of cameras that are used for the pictures on its website. It updates its statistics with the latest models, the number of phones taken, and so on. If you head over to the Flickr webpage for Apple-branded cameras, you'll notice how very rarely the iPad 2's camera is being used.

Apple has sold millions of units of the iPad 2. Flickr reports, however, that there is something like an average of 25 daily users taking pictures with the iPad's 2 camera. That's laughable.

Some may argue that this is because the iPad 2 camera isn't very good, but statistics aren't any better for other tablets. Of course, taking pictures is not the only use case for the camera on the back. After all, when you do so, you look quite ridiculous:

I understand that the camera on the back of a tablet is meant for video. No, it's not meant for capturing video, because that would make you look even more ridiculous than taking photos. The point is to be able to show your surroundings to whomever you are video conferencing with.

Nevertheless, I still think it's really only there so the manufacturer can list it as a feature. After you play with it once or twice, you just don't use it anymore.

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