The G1's camera seems to be slow. Really slow. As in several-seconds slow. I always wondered why; then I started to look at my pictures from the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Ah. I see. I don't think that's because of the curvature of the lens (it's not curved THAT much) I was apparently panning the camera when I took this picture (to keep up with the float, though I didn't correctly account for the very long shutter delay, and the float ended up behind the pole). You are seeing the effect of the CCD "scanning". This reminds me of this project, in which a dude builds a digital camera from a flatbed scanner. This is a picture of his garage door opening and closing while he takes a single exposure.
I hope this isn't an actual limitation of the G1's hardware. My cheap Nokia 6267, a feature phone, had an excellent 2MP camera that took pictures nearly instantaneously. So far, the G1's camera reminds me of my short experience with Windows Mobile 5's camera app - slow and clunky.