Nokia Faked Its PureView Demo, Claims To Have Never Said It Was Real

When we watched the latest ad from Nokia showing off its PureView technology and ridiculously fluid optical image stabilisation, we were stunned. Excited. Happy. If the camera on the Lumia was that good, we wanted it. But it was faked. Nokia isn't showing off what the Lumia 920 can do -- that video was shot with a big DSLR.

Update: Nokia has taken to its blog to show us what OIS actually looks like on the Lumia 920.

Sure, companies jerk people around all the time: photoshop to create impossibly perfect models, excellent lighting to stage pristine conditions, makeup to cover zits, angles to mock thinness and so on and so on. It's all a damn pony show to sell, sell, sell. Tricking people, be damned. And that's fair, we get it. But there's a difference between these expected marketing tricks of the trade and a bait and switch.

Nokia posted the video above on its official YouTube channel as an explicit demo of PureView technology -- the same tech in the new Lumia 920. Generically cute guy and alternatively cute girl go out on a cute bike ride with Lumia in tow. He records. He uses his Lumia phone and its awesome PureView technology to capture a moment. And oh my god that optical image stabilisation is so good. Unbelievably so! That's what Nokia wanted us to see.

But as Pocketnow discovered, this wasn't actually recorded with PureView technology -- it was capped from a pro DSLR. If you look closely, as the girl rides by a reflection, you can see a van complete with a man holding what looks like the biggest phone on the planet or a RED camera. It's a camera crew faking technology to trick its consumers. It's cheating. Look at it.

Here's what Nokia told us when we asked for comment:

"To be fair, the video was a demonstration of optical image stabilisation, not PureView"

-Doug Dawson, Vice President of Media Relations, Nokia

Why would Nokia want to demo the stabilisation prowess of some other company's camera? As you can see on Nokia's YouTube page, the video has the word PureView all over it, a clear attempt to impress us with PureView by using something that isn't PureView. That's not dubious marketing, it's just downright deceiving. The company cops to faking the video in an obscure corporate blog post most people won't read, which, sure, is kind of commendable. But the actually honest thing to do would be a little "some images simulated" disclaimer or any other number of ways to post this video without being so cavalier with the truth.

[Nokia via PocketNow]



    I'll just leave this here.

      Is that real? Because that's amazing.

        Sure looks real. Ol' Ben wouldn't lie to us!

        Yep. There are other vids floating around of people having hands on with it from the event too. It's rather mind blowing.

          Here's one of filming in action

            Oh that's footage of someone filming the display output of what a nokia camera is doing on a video uploading service that has inbuilt image stabilisation technology as well. Great. I can see exactly what it going on.

            Nice try Nokia Rep.

            If they had faith in their tech and it was that good they sould have backed it in and not used pro equipment.

              It's footage of someone shaking a Lumia 920 and filming at the same time, showing how well the image stabilisation works.

                I want to see the actual video footage that comes off the phone, not what the phone display shows me, through someone elses video camera on a video sharing site that not only compresses video but has its own image stabilisation. There are so many layers here between me and the actual raw footage.

                Put that on Youtube.

                If it wasn't good enough for Nokia in their own ad promoting it why should I take it as a given that it's impressive.

                  Ohhh. I didn't know youtube had it's own image stabilisation. Sorry.

              Yeah, the first video ( ) was a lot more impressive IMHO. I used to do that "shake test" (this is a few years back) with P&S digicams to test their stabilisation and very few managed that kind of quality, even with flash.

                This is exactly my point you can clearly see Youtube's own image stabilisation in effect on that video, and that's a video of the phone's display showing me it. It seems the still image stabilisation does look good. But the video? Give us some RAW video footage and then make a judgement.

                I can't back something as impressive especially the company that makes it isn't confident to use the footage in its own advertisement of the product and exact feature its trying to market.

                  I have to disagree. Sure, YouTube features stabilisaiton. But from ~1:22 what you see is a video of a guy shaking a phone up and down, then taking a photo without flash while shaking it, then zooming in on that photo to show its quality.

                  Whatever stabilisation YouTube imposes on the video, you can't seriously suggest that it could be applied to the performance of the camera on the 920. The video of the phone may be stabilised, but the photo that he took would still be blurry if the phone's camera didn't have impressive stabilisation of its own.

      thankyou! that look's incredible!


      Must show this to my GF, as her phone camera means a lot to her. She loves the look of the 920 already, but with this I believe she will be SOLD. I surely am!

      Just so you know, there's nothing magic about taking sharp pictures from a camera that's shaking. You just need to use a fast shutter - 1/500sec or more should do it, no matter how bad the shake is.

      Of course, the tradeoff is that you collect a lot less light, which means much greater noise levels (especially with moderate light levels like indoors). So you then need heavy noise removal algorithms (which tend to destroy surface textures too), or you could use average together a large number of adjacent pixels to smooth out the noisy ones (which reduces resolution and sharpness).

      All of which is impossible to evaluate from a few seconds of YouTube video of the phone's screen. You really need to see the final result to see how good a job they did.

    That video blatently insinuated it was showing lumia video "THIS IS LUMIA", have they no shame?!?!

    Why are all the Nokia reps on the internet this morning?

      I know right... they've even written the grammatical errors and everything!

        They made us all take classes in "Internet Grammer 101" so we'd fit in :P

          I just really think that if Nokia thought the image stabilization was so good then they needed to back it in. I really don't like being misled and then saying but wait, the image stabilization is awesome, see here are some videos of it.

          Well why not use it in the ad.

          It's like Obama's birth certificate and Romney's tax returns. Release footage of something being recorded with shaking side by side with the unedited raw footage from the phone and I'll be happy. Cheers.

            I'm looking forward to GSMArena's take on this - and DPReview's, if they feel it's worth their time. And of course impressions and videos from casual users - ideally with side-by-side comparisons from competing devices!

              I think you sell Nokia too short,, footage from the iPhone was used in the recent Avengers film. So to spin that this feature should only be for 'casual users' is a bit of a low target to set yourselves when 'Things are about to change' with the Nokia 920.

              The RED one is not competing with any phone's camera.

                I'm not setting the bar low for the camera, I'm setting it appropriately for myself. I don't spend a lot of time setting up a shot or maintaining a video benchmarking station - but I do shoot 1:30 clips of friends singing Happy Birthday while a candle-filled cake is brought in to light up a dark room; or trying to capture the rumbling ruckus of 8-10 year old kids playing.

                I would love to see casual footage of that kind taken with this camera (and other devices like the SGS3 or iP5) because that's the kind of shooting I'll be doing! :--] It's not that the feature is only useful to casual users, so much as "casual user" is my personal usage scenario so the results for a casual user are the ones which are relevant to my interests ^_^

    I thought Apple owned the letters o, i and s... surely changing the order doesn't stop the lawyers.

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