Ari Partinen, senior Nokia Pureview camera engineer, headed to Apple

Ari Partinen

Nokia is out of the smartphone race as a company, though Microsoft is picking up the baton with its newly acquired mobile hardware division. That said, competitor companies acknowledge the talent at Nokia, notably Apple who has snipped camera expert Ari Partinen. According to Partinen's Twitter feed, today marks his last day working on the Lumia family of devices.

The senior engineer states that a new chapter in Cupertino will be well under way soon, and even confirms to a Twitter reply that the company he will be migrating to is indeed Apple. With Partinen heading to Apple, this could be a sign that Tim Cook and co. are looking to really bump up the quality of experience when it comes to photography on the range of iPhones.

While Windows Phone continues to take its time to catch up to the big players in the market, the family of Lumia devices are renown for optics.

Via: Engadget


Reader comments

Ari Partinen, senior Nokia Pureview camera engineer, headed to Apple



It's a team of people, just like game developers or companies. It is always a company's usual practice to pick someone from the team, which is always the team leader, to represent them in conferences and other public events.


But it is not a huge loss for Nokia/Microsoft Mobile. They still have Juha Alaharku. And who knows, there will be new talent which will further improve the imaging experience in future devices.

Like Juha was the greatest there, LoL... They lost Damian Dining, who was the real face in the Pureview team, all because the trojan horse & his minions wanted more warm photos (and the result is the 1020 fiasco, with its yellowish photos).

808 was the latest real pureview. All after is just a mimick.

not really

in matters of functionality(basic stuff) , symbian was the last os to get everything right except it was too late to adapt

symbian could have killed off android and ios in its early stages if Belle had released earlier

808 pureview remains one of the best smartphones till date for people who want functionailty over apps

windows phone is closing in on symbians basic stuff and its really the little things which make an os worth using

i love both os's!!

Nope, symbian would've never killed off IOS or android. I have the Nokia 808 with Belle which was a good leap forward but it was just horrible, laggy and right down frustrating to use. I'm glad they scrapped Symbian.

They pretty much already do (minus the 1020 of course). The 5S may only have 8 megapixels, but its a pretty good camera.

But the quality of imaging which u get in a mid range Lumia is equal to the iPhone 5s which is fucking costly. Price matters

But the L920 isn't a mid-range device. It is considered high-end alongside the L925, 1020 and 1520.

Not just currently. iPhones always price at AED 3000+ when released. I don't think Lumia 920 got above AED 2500 anytime.

The 5S takes really really good photos for what it is. No one can argue that it is a really good camera. Sure it's not as good as some of the Lumias and not as good in some conditions (low light) but it handles everything very well - better than any non-Lumia phone. Plus it is fast. Not like the 10 seconds it takes my 1020 to take a picture...

As soon as I read your comment, I hit my camera button and took a pic on my 1020. Either you have your shutter set to be open for 4 seconds or you have a faulty 1020. Mine took under 6 seconds from the press of the camera button to being ready to take another pic. The resolution has a lot to do with it, as well as the amount of processing that goes into it. Imho its definitely worth it. My iPhone toting friends always tell me to take pics with my phone when we go out because they say mine always look the best. Different people have different priorities; I don't mind waiting a few extra seconds for some really great pics.

Yeah I exaggerated a bit by saying 10 seconds but 6 is still incredibly long to the nearly instant readiness of the iPhone. Trust me, I love the quality of pictures my L1020 takes but it would be nice if it would open nearly instantaneously like the iPhone and if you choose to take a picture as soon as the camera app is open then it will do so but at the lower resolution that they use for sharing. There could even be a small timer counting down to when the full capacity of the camera is available (34MP) which would be about 6 seconds.

I dunno... just pros and cons to both. Still very happy with my L1020.

Just took a picture with my sister's iphone 5s and it took about 2.5 seconds from the time the button was pressed to being ready for another picture. People keep saying its near instant but it really isn't. Yes, iphone probably takes the fastest pictures of modern smartphones, but I hate that people keep perpetuating things like this about apple.

About the app taking time to open, the iphone doesnt have a shutter that needs to open every time like the 1020 does, which takes time. Also, Nokia Camera is slower than the built in camera app. Thats where the time to open the app is coming from. I agree that is should be faster, maybe a shutter wasn't the best idea.

I'm following your train of thought, but you switched from time to take a pic to time to open the app. Two different things.

I meant the same thing, overall time to get a picture. And yes, my numbers weren't accurate, just what it seemed to me off the top of my head. When you're taking a picture seconds are everything, thus me feeling like the iPhone is nearly instaneous when compared to my L1020 (and I use Nokia Camera). So yes, you're right, my times are off but the overall idea is not. When someone pulls out their phone to take a picture they typically want to be able to take that picture as quickly as possible (most cases). When we're talking about pictures, seconds are everything.

So I don't know your beef with Apple but you sort of contradict yourself by saying that Apples iPhone "probably takes the fastest pictures of modern smartphones" (exactly what I'm talking about) and then argue that I'm perpetuating a fact that you also believe... huh?

iPhone is fast and takes good pictures. Lumia 1020 is slow and takes amazing pictures. End of story.

Actually, if you really read what I'm saying, I didn't contradict myself; please don't put words in my mouth. I said that while iPhone is one of the fastest, I'm tired of people perpetuating "guesstimates" like you did of apple products being perfect for things like camera times (e.g. near instant). I have zero beef with apple, but your exaggerations seem very one sided, that’s all.

As far as pulling your phone out to take a pic goes, the < 6 seconds is processing time; the picture has already been snapped while you're waiting. In fact the initial time to snap a pic is about the same as an iPhone; the phone simply has to process a much larger image after the fact. There is also burst mode if you want to delay processing.

I don't know why you're trying to make this personal when it obviously isn't. I'm stating simple facts here, with one opinion (more of a rant if you will about the general mindset of people). This is why I'm actually doing these comparisons to post actual numbers, rather than just posting numbers that I think are right. It's more for people who don't have either phone reading the comments than anything else.

Just take 5MP photos when you don't need full resolution ones. It gets a bit faster then.

No, this won't increase the price any more. They make it expensive as hell in the first place to include costs like these.

oh, did I mention the beats audio?

Ladies and gentlemen I bring u the iPhone 6! audio quality never heard before, imaging like no one else, and a screen to trounce all. All yours for $1^xx.

Smart phone, Stupid people :p

no offence meant, I think if they keep the price the same they might literally block WP from growing especially in the US.

He's probably been brought in to do just the opposite. With his experience he'll be able to improve things while keeping costs down.

The iPhone is in just about the most expensive price range in the market, but it certainly isn't alone. There's no way iPhone would sell if it went up much more than current launch price, unless they created some "pro" version and charged extra for a camera, which isn't really apple's style in the phone space. It also won't block WP growth in the US because if camera was the main reason, the 1020 would have sold a lot more than it did. Lastly, while I know you were joking with the first part of your comment, none of this will be seen in the iPhone 6, which has probably been ready for a few months now. These things take a long time to implement, unless its just software.

I only mean if Apple comes back aggressively, the few people who buy WP there might get an Apple instead. 1020 did not sell well, I can agree, but those who did buy 1020 or other models might get attracted to a bigger iPhone, better audio and camera (not necessarily true but thats how advertisment works)

And what I'm saying is that I don't think it will make that much of a difference. Amazing cameras on lumias created some mindshare, but not marketshare (hence the 1020 sales example). Apple simply getting better cameras won't block WP growth.

Nokia and Apple have a cross licensing deal so no need to be careful. I actually do not see them do a pureview style camera anytime soon though. Jonnie boy will not allow the camera to pop out of the case, not ever. That means there is no room for a camera with a much better quality than what they have now.

No. The patents belong to Nokia... And are now available for licensing by anyone... Including Apple.

Never gonna buy an iPhone. And if anybody gives me one, I'll probably trade/sell it for a Windows Phone. Ha!

So I'm correct in assuming that the the little "+" fad going on here is instead of doing +1, people are doing the plus for their Nokia phone number? If so, +929

I personally hate the trend. It contibutes nothing to the conversation. 

Anyway, as someone with an iPhone 5s and Lumia 1020, I'm curious to see where the iPhone camera goes. I already love the camera on my 5s, but improvements are always welcome. The camera on my 1020 still gives me a yellow tint, even with the most updates software. 

Engineers at Nokia are clearly evaluating their choices. I'm not implying that it's a good or a bad outcome, just that Partinen has made his decision, Apple clearly recognizes the talent at Nokia and it'll step up competition, which is better for all.

Of course it may all be a ploy. He may have a double-agent style mission to destroy Apple from within.

"Hey, at Nokia we used to use potato skin as a lens"

"Ok we'll give it a shot on the iPhone 6!"

I still think it's too early for the WP to be needing competition in an area where it has a clear selling point advantage. Competition is good, but you still need something unique to be worth buying, and as it stood, the camera was the only thing. Now Apple has insider knowledge on the one thing that was truly a tipping point for some.

Biggest mistake by ms, now apps and technology exclusive for wp and lumias will be available for all. No one will buy wp anymore.

I hope this doesn't impact the pure view technology in any serious way.
Optics have always been something Nokia was renowned for, something they were better at. It would be a dire shame if the were lost. And rather ignorant.

If DJCBS is right and Nokia is returning to phones in 2016, they probably shouldn't be selling their experts to the competition.

This expert was supposed to be sold to Microsoft anyway. So Nokia isn't actually selling anyone. It's just one of those that didn't accept to move to Microsoft and preferred to Terry something else. He's not alone, you know? ;)

Well, they are not slaves :-) so not much MS can do if the person wants to leave (other than trying to offer an even higher salary etc.).

Btw, this was probably set in motion before MS took over so even less MS could have done.

I hope many of you just kidding...he might be talented but that doesn't mean he takes with him Nokia 's patents to bring them on iPhones ...he might reinvent some new sure but Nokia/Microsoft are already in speed mode

Yesss!!! MS should get Trojan horses to cripple companies like Apple. Btw, why not send Elop himself for this task? He has a really nice track record. ;)

Lol Microsoft is the responsible for Apple still bring in business. If they hadn't bailed them out, Apple would be home by now lol

You are so right on this one. After all, surely he must be the only person at Nokia/Microsoft working on camera technology.

This is the area that is Apples weakness, that and connectivity such as Bluetooth sharing. Apple are now on the defense of their market. Weaknesses are starting to emerge but they are powerful and have many paid alliance.

Because they can't control one company that isn't Microsoft from buying employees from other companies who are also not Microsoft.

Dude Microsoft has got Nokia they have more employees than b4. 30,000 employees would be working for them now. So don't think the talented have gone. They have returned also for eg- Stephen Elop

No, they don't have Nokia. They have their D&S division, minus 2 factories. That's only 25,000 employees. Microsoft does not own Pureview technology, they only license it from Nokia, who is still a company.

Exactly! I hate when writers that write for websites write inaccurate and false articles saying that Microsoft bought/acquired Nokia because that is a lie and it causes dear readers like Aashish13 to honestly think that "Microsoft has got Nokia".

Jas00555, thanks for sharing the truth. I hope more people eventually understand what actually happened, even if other readers don't care.

Hello Viipottaja, it is nice to see you here.

I hope MNB can survive as well. I'm currently 700 miles away from home so I'm not at my computer to write any articles but when I do, they will be posted on MNB. Hopefully we will have new devices to write about and new stories to tell soon.

Personally, I wish Microsoft Mobile would send us loaner devices like Nokia used to do and we could do more original articles. I don't like writing short news articles but I realize that MNB is lacking in content as of late so maybe I should at least build a volume of posts to like WPCentral does to help keep MNB thriving.

Some posts that here, I never thought about writing about those topics due to my desire to write content rich articles but MNB has been pretty barren lately and I need to do more, do my part.

As always Viipottaja, thanks for your support of MNB in the past and present. Take care.

Or maybe he just wanted to work somewhere different. If a better job opportunity presents itself that offers you the benefits you want and you feel it will help you grow and develop, then take the job. This is the nature of the game. We all do it. Some companies offer so many great benefits that their staff just retire from the company (not many like this anymore).

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Google it. It's a known fact that Sony makes the sensor in the iPhone. iFixit confirmed it when they did their teardown of the 5S.

Uh oh! Microsoft needs to work fast and hold back all the wonderful talent they inherited from Nokia.

Wow one guy leaves and most people freak. He is not the only one that worked on any of the photography tech at Nokia. Plus, all tech has a patent. If they really want to match the tech they will have to invest or not get it at all.

Shouldn't MS/Nokia be looking to keep the so called top people so than can stride away from the competitor's!!!!

Yeah, a company with 100,000+ employees plus one of the largest research centers in the world is doomed without this one person.

This is one of first signs that Microsoft is already screwing up and loosing key personnel who made Lumia what it was.



You can't keep everybody. I think people on this site like to lose their minds over every bit of news. It is not as if Apple didn't have engineers before. There was patent news from them on the camera front yesterday.

Personally was sad to see this news HOWEVER is better that he goes as clearly he's not happy to stay and that would demotivate others, Microsoft and Nokia have strong team and if anyone didn't like the merge is best they depart.

And one of the biggest distinguishing features of the Lumia line takes a major hit. Out of all the less than happy news about Windows Phone over the last couple years, this is some of the worst in my opinion. :(

if future iPhones come up with camera almost as close to lumia, i might switch back to iPhone. though i love wp, it's starting to annoy me that this OS gets left behind in terms of apps. WTF microsoft?! hustle! aint buying that belfiore shit. just do the job and less talk. way too slow.

Absolutely no way I could go to iPhone regardless of how good the camera may be. WP may be a little behind, yes, but iOS genuinely annoys the hell out of me. Could never go back to using it.

why do people keep saying stuff like this? microsoft doesn't make those apps that are on android/ios. why do people keep acting like it's microsoft's fault those devs don't want to make wp apps? do you want ms to pay them to make those apps that they're making for free on other platforms? i seriously don't understand when people blame the app gap on ms. they don't make the apps.

Always sad to see people go, but that's life. It also means we could get someone new with even more talent!

i dont see the problem, i would believe the tech is restricted to Nokia or Microsoft and would require licensing if it agreed on. plus not only did they create and amazing camera but also software and the exclusive Carl Zeiss optics. the iphones may get better but will not be onpar with nokia/microsoft phones, if am wrong someone correct me but i dont think theres anything to worry about.

Well, technically every aspect of the Nokia cameras is now available for licensing. Microsoft is licensing it and so Apple can do it too. Ask this guy has to do is get to Cupertino and say "will need this and this and this parent from Nokia" and Apple will license them.

Well I don't know if every aspect of Nokia cameras is available for licensing. Aren't there some things that Microsoft has exclusive of, for a timed period? It's not big enough of a deal for me to research it at the moment.

No, Microsoft has absolutely no exclusivity over any Nokia patent. They had until the 25th of April because stuff like PureView was proprietary to Nokia phones and Nokia phones ran WP exclusively. The moment the deal closed and Nokia and Microsoft went their separate ways, Nokia's entire patent portfolio became open for licensing by whomever wishes to get a license.

They get hardward patent, plus are you looking at the contrack now, so how do you know the details.

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Nokia has been losing all their energy. Damian dining, marko ahtisari, and now this guy. I don't know. I always buy nokia phones. ALWAYS. But.....

You got to love APPLE They have great ideas? sure.
You better say that the iphone was built in stolen ideas from other smartphone company's.


That's better value than their purchase of Beats, and unlike beats you'll see the difference with his fire. Beats is mostly just marketing.

Both these things are also an admission that Apple's camera, audio quality and music services (streaming) are below par.

Wow, people freaking over a guy they didn't even know about before reading this article--quite hilarious I must say. Speaking of funny things, go to iMore and look how people are happy about this, thus implying the iPhone's current camera isn't that good after all...

Nokia owns the patents, that is what matters. And as many have said, he's one guy amongst a team of many that made Pureview happen. Let the copyright infringement games begin.

I don't see what's the surprise. He's not the only one that didn't accept to move to Microsoft.
And it's not like I didn't say time and time again that this would happen after the deal. Companies aren't stupid. They know Nokia had the best camera tech. And now that tech is available for licensing. So why not do it and pick up a few of the ex-Nokia team members along the way?
I would not be surprised to see Samsung picking up some people too.

Yeah. And windows phone users left with nothing, no more " hey I got the best camera phone " or " no one else comes close" if they'd make a better camera.

How do you know this? Are you clear about what this guy contributed? He is still one person. He is a senior engineer, but still one person.

Yes he is one person but if someone like him who became a part who created the greatest camera phone the Lumia 1020 then I wouldn't be surprised if he could also make it with apple

Microsoft needs to really ramp up support of Lumia devices, marketing, etc. If companies in the lead are stealing people away from you, when you're behind them, with knowledge on what separates you from the pack, growth of windows phone in general could slow down.

Let see a year or two from now if Apple create better camera on phone than past Lumias or future Microsoft mobile, I will not hesitate to call Microsoft a loser. Microsoft must do something to catch up

Maybe he's just ready to move on and given his resume Apple is probably paying top dollar. It may have absolutely nothing to do with the acquisition. It's one person.

Ok. I have already got both top of the cream phones from Nokia before she went into the mobile phone history - 1020 and 1520. I doubt MS will bring anything amazing like Nokia. Good luck MS and Windows Phone.... And Cortana too....


BTW, Apple now has both Pureview and Beats audio. MS???

"BTW, Apple now has both Pureview and Beats audio"
Now windows phone is f*cked up, I didn't read the full article but did they also got the pureview? Tell me this isn't true. Pureview camera/app is one of the reasons why I chose Lumia ( 1020) instead of Iphone.

No they just made a hire of a senior engineer from the large team that made/developed aspects of what is called "PureView". Nokia still has Pureview patents.

This is just the beginning. More will be leaving Nokia since the phone division is no longer with Nokia. Apple need not have to name theirs as Pureview. Perhaps iView will be the name instead? As long as Apple tweaks the technologies by some, there is nothing can Nokia do.

Either way, Nokia/Microsoft still have the lead in this category. Now they will just have to turn it up a notch, which is good for us! I want 82 megapixels next time!

Why not make it 100 megapixel with 12k capability, 100x zoom with ultrathin carbon fiber or titanium body lets see how those Apple react.

It seems like MS bought the Nokia devices to die.

Please Microsoft do something great or lose us -your avid fan

I wonder if, in a year from now, the common iPhone user would acknowledge and appreciate why the camera is so good is because Apple hired a guy who helped built PureView technology for Nokia. For the ones that do, only then would they realize what they have missed out on; what innovations Nokia devices had to offer for the past few decades.

Microsoft should just keep on going with their low-light capability and excellent image resolution with full manual features. But, they need work on reducing shutter lag by copying what iOS and Android have. They should have the camera do all AF and AE work prior to pressing shutter release to reduce lag. IPhone already does this.

I like your idea but I disagree, they should turn their attention on reinventing the Microsoft Mobile and how they could catch up or lead not just make another camera phone again people will buy a dslr instead rather than a camera phone.

Yes, this should be their main focus. But, as an aside, they should not forget why a lot of people bought into WP - Nokia build, design, and camera. At least I did since WP7. If they stray from this, I'll be looking for another OS.

Yes you are right. But maybe its time to change their strategy by now. Yes windows phones are good looking also have an impressive camera. But windows phones are very late in terms of technology that they have compared to other big smartphone companies

Guys stop freaking out. I don't really think this is adversely going to affect Microsoft Mobile. And who knows he's probably out there to acquire knowledge apple's auto adjust feature. Maybe even their iPhone line. To top it all, iPhones are overpriced the only reason iOS has a large market share is cause of USA and UK and other countries where they provide on contract phones. I see more Nokia than iPhones here in India. My hometown Kochi is said to have a record of the only city in India where windows Phone outnumbers iOs and Android that's a whole city as loyalty..