The iPhone 7 may have the greatest improvement in its camera ever, according to one industry insider. In fact, the smartphone may even sport a camera that takes pictures just as well as a DSLR camera does. If the rumor is true, that would be quite a feat for a smartphone camera.
“Biggest camera jump ever”
According to MacRumors, Daring Fireball‘s John Gruber, who is typically very well-informed when it comes to the technology industry, said in a recent podcast that he heard the rumor about the iPhone 7’s camera “from a birdie of a birdie.” His source apparently told him that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is working on what could be the “biggest camera jump ever.”
“I’ve heard that it’s some kind of weird two-lens system where the back camera uses two lenses and it somehow takes it up into DSLR quality imagery,” Gruber reportedly said.
Importantly, he did not mention the iPhone 7 name specifically but indicated that the major camera improvement could come in the next iPhone, which could end up being called the iPhone 6S of course.
Details on the rumored iPhone 7 camera
MacRumors suggests that what Gruber said about the rear camera in what could potentially be the iPhone 7 might involve a system that’s similar to the Duo Lens system that’s in HTC Corp (TPE:2498)’s M8 smartphone. That system combines a standard sensor with what HTC calls an “Ultrapixel” sensor, which lets in a lot more light than other sensors so that the quality of the images taken with the camera is better. That second lens also gives more information about the photos that are taken to the main lens, which enables the focus of the image to be shifted.
Another possibility is a system that’s currently under development by a company called Corephotonics. That system uses two lenses with focal lengths that are separate and can switch between the lenses to make subjects in the distance look larger without using a traditional zoom lens. The system being developed by Corephotonics then compares the images both lenses take and selects the pixels that are clearest so that the best photo possible is the result.
Battle of the smartphone cameras
The quality of the camera has become a major battleground for smartphone makers in recent years. Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) (BIT:NOK1V) (HEL:NOK1V) tried to up the quality of the camera in its Lumia line of phones, primarily with high pixel counts but also through other features. Ultimately, however, the better camera wasn’t enough to lure a significant number of smartphone buyers away from Apple or Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:005930).