I think the future for companies making high end cameras is not for add-on lenses on phones.
Phone makers add lenses on their own already, even adding multiple (tiny) sensors behind multiple lenses in the same phone already.
Let's face it:
- That phone has more CPU and GPU power than a camera
- The phone is highly connected to wireless networks (both cell/GSM as well as WiFi etc.)
- The phone has access to high end photo retouching software
- A phone's (touch) screen is far better than any ever found on any other device
And no matter what the phone makers keep adding as sensors and lenses in their ultra compact design, they'll never replace our DSLR (or mirrorless full frame for those that are there) camera's quality as the physical dimensions to do that are simply not there. Still that phone has Lightroom, Photoshop, Facebook, Instagram, etc.
The world today is expecting instant consumption for photography, not allowing a photographer a few weeks to process the images - the other attendees will have shared their crappy pictures long before the photographer gets home or to the office to process it all in Lightroom and send it to the (paying) customer.
So instead of making add-on lenses: making sensors(and lenses) that replace a phone's tiny camera and use the rest of the phone and its software to do editing in the field, to manage pictures, to upload it to social media, etc.
Then think about ergonomics while taking pictures and you'll end up with a need for physical buttons you can feel while taking a picture, to not have to watch a screen as the sun can make it impossible to look at while taking that picture etc.
I'm not talking about a crappy app by the likes of canon: just no. Just allow the phone high speed access tot the camera, and let the phone and it's third party apps do the rest and take control.
It's not just me either: it's also in articles like these:
There's a new change happening in the photography world and you may not even be aware of it. Let's see how it'll pan out and learn how it might affect you. The digital revolution handed photography to the masses on a large scale, with the introduction of digital cameras and camera phones...
So yes: I think there's a need to embrace parts of what makes a modern phone an appreciated device by almost all of us, but combine it with what makes a pro(sumer) camera wanted by photographers like the ergonomics, the sensor size, the choice in lenses, ...