Today, a user by the name of RobotKitten posed the question, "Shouldn't tablet designers make the front-facing camera the better one?" in Reddit's Android forum. The post has garnered a healthy response from the Reddit community and has us asking ourselves the same question: Since taking a picture with the rear-facing camera on a tablet feels plain 'ol silly and video chat is marketed as one of the main reasons for buying a tablet, why do so many tablet manufacturers invest so little in their front-facing cameras?
Surely, manufacturers must have their reasons. The front-facing camera is almost always located closer to its subject, requiring less detail than when a user wants to showcase a larger space with a rear-facing camera. But the larger reason is actually hiding in plain sight: larger image resolution means more megapixels which means the user will end up using more bandwidth during video chats. And we all know how quickly those data plans get eaten up.
Still, manufacturers could increase the quality of the lens without creating a larger image that requires more bandwidth. All it takes is a bit more attention and care. While two megapixels is more than enough for a front-facing camera to adequately portay someone's face, even 1.3MP could do the same job well so long as the lens was of adequate quality.