Many viewers would describe the image that Huawei used in a Google Plus post promoting its flagship smartphone P9 as a beautiful portrait. Angled backlighting is creating a golden shine in the subject’s hair, and warm subdued colors and lens flare that adds to the composition. Add an attractive model and a natural pose to that and you’ve got yourself a really nice image.
Most photographers would easily spot that the image in question was not captured using a smartphone though. We’ve only seen a small version of the image, so can’t comment on detail, but the depth-of-field is much too shallow and the tonal range too large for the small sensors found in smartphone cameras. It’s no surprise then that the Exif data, which was still embedded in the image, revealed that it had been taken with a Canon EOS 5D Mark III and a EF70-200mm F2.8 lens.
Problem is that Huawei is strongly implying the image was taken on a Huawei P9 in the caption:
“The #HuaweiP9’s dual Leica cameras makes taking photos in low light conditions like this a pleasure”.
After criticism in social media the Chinese manufacturer has taken down the photo and apologized in a statement to Android Police:
“the photo, which was professionally taken while filming a Huawei P9 advert, was shared to inspire our community. We recognize though that we should have been clearer with the captions for this image. It was never our intention to mislead. We apologize for this and we have removed the image.”
It’s not the first and probably not the last time this sort of thing has happened, but given the Huawei P9 comes with a Leica-branded dual-lens camera, we would at least have hoped for the promotional shots to be taken with a model from the German manufacturer.