Founded in Germany in 1869 by Ernest Leitz, Leica Camera is an international premium manufacturer of cameras and sports optics. The Leica brand has long been renowned for its combination of German craftsmanship and industrial design with innovative technologies.
Photography aficionados thus excitedly greeted the November 10, 2022 announcement of the “Leitz Phone 2,” a 5G Android smartphone exclusive to SoftBank Corp. (TOKYO: 9434) in Japan. Manufactured by Sharp Corporation and available at select ‘SoftBank’ stores from November 18, the Leitz Phone 2 features a camera and design fully supervised by Leica Camera.
Leitz Phone 2 sports a 47.2 MP 1-inch image sensor
Leica Camera described the Leitz Phone 2 as a smartphone that is reduced to the essentials so photo enthusiasts can capture special moments with the best image quality. It features a massive 1-inch 47.2 MP CMOS image sensor and a high-performance Snapdragon® 8 Gen 1 Mobile Platform processor (CPU).
The smartphone’s lens has a focal length of 19 mm to enable flexibility in image composition, and with its aperture of 1.9, the Leitz Phone 2 produces images with a high dynamic range and low image noise, even in low ambient light.
Leica Camera also developed a “Golden Hour” widget exclusive to the Leitz Phone 2 to display the optimal times for after sundown and before sunrise, which are ideal for taking photos with soft tones. More detail on the smartphone’s features and specifications can be found here.
“Leitz Looks” capture the world of Leica
At a demonstration event held by SoftBank in November 2022, Hiroshi Iwasa, Director of Retail & Sales at Leica Camera Japan, explained the Leitz Phone 2 concept. “Leica has been pursuing excellence in imaging performance for over 100 years, and by combining the best of the world of photography with the world of smartphones, we’re enabling uncompromising Leica-quality photos for every situation," he said.
Koichiro Hirokawa, Senior Director of SoftBank’s Partner Relations & Product Planning Division at its Consumer Business Unit, noted that the Leitz Phone 2 is an evolution over the previous model, the Leitz Phone 1, which was released by SoftBank in July 2021. He said one big advancement is the addition of “Leitz Looks,” or camera sensor modes, which simulate three high-end Leica lenses: Noctilux 50mm, Summilux 35mm and Summilux 28mm. Below are some visual examples of photos taken with these modes.
The NOCTILUX 50 mode is ideal for capturing animals, plants, food, and other subjects at close range.
The SUMMILUX 35 mode is useful for all-round scenes, from everyday scenery to nearby subjects.
The SUMMILUX 28 mode is optimal for shooting landscapes and architecture.
While regular Leica camera lenses can run into the thousands of dollars, not to mention they need to be swapped according to the scene and moment, Leitz Phone 2 users can now take pictures that reproduce the world of Leica with one smartphone.
(Posted on November 18, 2022)
by SoftBank News Editors