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A camera phone is a mobile phone that can take pictures and record video clips. The pictures and clips from the camera phone can then be transferred to and stored in a computer, shared with other mobile devices and so on.
Most new cellular phones are already equipped with cameras of varying levels of quality. Some camera phones have features that rival dedicated digital cameras, including:
The first wireless transmission of images taken by a camera phone took place on June 11, 1997 when Philippe Khan shared pictures of his newborn baby to over 2,000 family and friends using a prototype Sharp camera phone. The Sharp J-SH04 was released in Japan by 2001, and was then introduced to American and European markets the following year.
Camera phones are making a major contribution in recording newsworthy events and getting them to mainstream media. In 2007, New York City Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, encouraged camera phone users to use their devices in recording crimes or dangerous situations as they happen, and then sending these images or video recordings to the appropriate response teams.