Software and hardware variation in Symbian camera system
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During the past decade, multimedia features in mobile phones have become common. Even the low-end category mobile phones are equipped with camera in order to capture digital images and record videos. Mobile phones are giving tough competition to standalone camera devices by providing quality imaging experience to the consumers. In order to lead and compete with the pack of global mobile device manufacturers, Nokia has to differentiate its mobile device offerings across the wide price range addressing different market requirements. This necessitates them to use different types of cameras and flash hardware modules across their mobile phone range resulting in different camera system configurations. To support the range of mobile phones with a single software operating system platform, effective software variation is required. Some of the possibilities with mobile phone camera system configurations are devices equipped with one or two camera modules along with multiple or no flash HW, camera sensors with resolutions ranging from VGA to 41 megapixels, camera modules with autofocus or fixed focus lenses, flash modules based on Xenon or LED technology and the camera system controlled by either application processor or dedicated image signal processor. Symbian OS is the software platform capable of supporting various Nokia mobile devices with different hardware configurations. This is possible due to extensive software variation mechanisms that the Symbian OS supports. This thesis is an effort in describing various camera system configurations within the Nokia Symbian mobile phones and the software variation being used in supporting those.