We start the week of Samsung with a controversy that has been brewing by Reddit users, who are upset because they feel cheated when they use Space Zoom, the Korean camera feature that was presented with the Samsung Galaxy S20 ultra that allowed to take photos with up to 100x optical zoom, is being flagged as deceptive advertising.
It should be noted that the manufacturer has spent two generations of its high-end terminals advertising it as the best way to take photos of the moon. Koreans have long claimed that Space Zoom uses artificial intelligence to enhance photos taken at 100x magnification, with the Reddit opener maintaining that they use textures taken from very high-resolution images of the moon that are then overlap with the one taken by the user.
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A neural network or a case of false advertising?
One only has to read the Reddit thread and the method that Redditor u/ibreakphotos followed (along with a good assortment of test images) to see that his claims seem to have merit. However, Space Zoom uses a neural network trained with thousands of images of the moon to then add additional information to the photos taken with the phone in what is known as Moon Mode.
The thread challenges Samsung directly for false advertising. There it linked to an article about the Samsung Galaxy S21 that appeared on MSPower, and in that article, the company was directly quoted as saying that Space Zoom captures hundreds of frames in a matter of seconds, then uses AI to fine-tune the details. All of this seems to contradict ibreakphotos’ claims, as the article points out that Space Zoom enhances details already captured with the Galaxy S21 Ultra’s camera.
Huawei has been accused in the past of doing the same thing with moon photos taken with its P30s and not fully clarifying how its particular Moon Mode worked. For now Samsung has not commented on it.