Nokia admits it 'simulated' Lumia camera demonstration

One of the first ads for the new smartphone purported to compare its image stabilization with video shot with a regular smartphone. Problem is that the superior Lumia video was shot with a regular camera.

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Steven Musil
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One of Nokia's first Lumia ads showed a couple shooting video with a Lumia 920, comparing it to video shot without Nokia's optical image stabilization. Nokia

Nokia took the wraps off its new line of Windows Phone 8 smartphones today, along with what one would assume to be a carefully crafted media campaign to demonstrate their strengths.

One of the key features Nokia was touting was the PureView camera, which the handset maker said boosted optical image stabilization (OIS), the function that counteracts hand shake by moving the lens. Nokia even went so far as to claim its OIS was 50 percent more effective than systems in some high-end digital cameras.

But it turns out that Nokia's campaign to attract consumers was the most shaky. One of the first promotional videos released today sought to demonstrate the OIS capabilities by showing a couple riding bikes. But the good folks over at The Verge noticed a reflection that indicated the video had been shot with a regular video camera and not the Lumia 920 as implied and cried foul.

Nokia soon owned up to the ruse, admitting that it had produced the video to "simulate" images that were possible with its new OIS.

"Hindsight is 20/20, but we should have posted a disclaimer stating this was a representation of OIS only," Nokia spokesperson Heidi Lemmetyinen wrote in a company blog post. "This was not shot with a Lumia 920. We apologize for the confusion we created."

The Finnish handset maker has since posted another video (see below) without the bikes and fun-loving couple showing the new OIS shot on a prototype Lumia 920 side-by -side with a video shot over the same course on a smartphone without OIS.

Nokia says the "difference is apparent," and it is. But in the future, let's also be more transparent.