There are a lot of reasons for an expensive camera and lenses - the ability to shoot in low light conditions, action photography, great composition control and so on. But great photography is possible with cameras that aren't fancy - Vogue editorials have been shot with Kodak Instamatics. Much more important is the photographer.
Smartphone cameras aregetting much better for standard scenes. They also happen to be with you. Apple has a page showing off a few photos made with the iPhone 6. Most were taken only with Camera application that comes with the phone. The others use one or two cheap applications that allow greater exposure control and some editing capabilities. Not DSLR quality, but getting closer and closer.