Jiandong Wang (China, Spain), Third Place – Architecture, “Calpe Sunrise” (Location: Calpe, Spain, Shot on iPhone 11 Pro Max)

Now that half the world has smartphones in their pockets (with 3.5 billion smartphone users globally, according to Statista), more is being documented than every before. That doesn’t mean everyone is a good photographer though.

The iPhone Photography Awards, the first and longest-running iPhone photography competition, has announced the winners of this year’s competition. In perusing their long list of winners, it was nice to see that some of the standouts captured their images without even using the most up-to-date equipment; one winner scored a prize using an iPhone 4 (c. 2010), which might feel antiquated for those accustomed to constantly upgrading to the latest model.

Below are 20 highlights that often rival the work of professional photojournalists. Enjoy these peeks into some very personal views of our wondrous world.

Dimpy Bhalotia (United Kingdom), Photographer of the Year — Grand Prize, “Flying Boys” (Location: Banaras, India, shot on iPhone X)
Tu Odnu (China), First Place – Abstract, Untitled (Shot on iPhone 7 Plus)
Tod Chen (China), Third Place – Abstract, Untitled (Shot on iPhone 7 Plus)
Ji Li (China), Second Place – Animals, “Flamingos” Location: Guangzhou Zoo (Shot on iPhone 6s, Processed with VSCO with kp3 preset)
Anna Aiko (Japan/France), Third Place – Animals, “The Empty Quarter” (Location: United Arab Emirates, Shot on iPhone X)
Haiyin Lin (China), First Place – Architecture, “Duomo di Milano” (Location: Milan, Italy, Shot on iPhone X, Processed with VSCO with lv03 preset, Processed with VSCO with a6 preset)
Ekaterina Varzar (United States), First Place – Children, “Cotton Candy” (Location: Vorontsovsky Park, Moscow, Shot on iPhone 6)
Hao Wen (China), Third Place – Floral, Untitled (Shot on iPhone X)
Dominic Dähncke (Spain), Third Place – Landscape, “The Cloud” (Location: Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain, Shot on iPhone 8 Plus, Processed with VSCO with b3 preset)
Audrey Blake (United States), First Place – Lifestyle, “Culture Fusion” (Location: Cancun, Mexico, Shot on iPhone X, Processed with VSCO with au5 preset)
Lisi Li (China), First Place – Nature, “The surface of the alien planet” (Location: Skógafoss, Iceland, Shot on iPhone 7 Plus, Processed with VSCO with 5 preset)
Jiawen Wu (Singapore), Third Place – Nature, “Journey to the Lava Field” (Location: Hawai, Shot on iPhone 6)
Fernando Merlo (Spain), First Place – News & Events, “Demons lighting the sky” (Paterna, Spain, Shot on iPhone X)
Omar Lucas (Peru), First Place – People, “Knitting to heal wounds” (Location: Ayacucho, Peru, Shot on iPhone 4)
Liu Dan (China), First Place – Series, Tattooed Women (Location: Mindat, Myanmar, Shot on iPhone 11 Pro Max)
Peng Hao (China), Second Place – Series, “Lonely Fishermen” (Location: Pico, Peru, Shot on iPhone 11 Pro Max, Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset)
Shinya Itahana (Japan), Third Place – Still Life, “84,000 statues of Yakushi Nyorai” (Location: Shimane, Japan, Shot on iPhone SE)
Leo Chan (Hong Kong), First Place – Sunset, “Nightfall at the Dolomites” (Location: Auronzo di Cadore, Italy, Shot on iPhone 11 Pro)
Kristian Cruz (United States), First Place – Travel, “Free from the Past” (Location: Varanasi, India, Shot on iPhone X, Processed with VSCO with a4 preset)

The Latest

Avatar photo

Hrag Vartanian

Hrag Vartanian is editor-in-chief and co-founder of Hyperallergic. You can follow him at @hragv.