Top insider leaks exciting new cameras coming to next-gen iPhones


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Many Android flagships nowadays feature multi-lens camera systems that include periscope cameras that can offer better optical zoom than what’s possible on phones that don’t have them. It all started a few years ago when Chinese smartphone maker Oppo demoed periscope camera tech in 2017, well ahead of its commercial debut. Huawei’s P30 phones launched in early 2019 packed a periscope telephoto lens, and many Android handsets followed. Samsung used a periscope camera to power a gimmick zoom feature, the 100x “Space Zoom” on Galaxy S20 Ultra and S21 Ultra.

Periscope cameras are currently the only way to significantly upgrade optical zoom on phones without increasing the camera bump size. Light passes through a prism at a 90-degree angle and then goes through the camera’s various lenses to reach the sensor. The lenses of a telescope lens aren’t parallel with the phone’s back, as it happens with every other camera. Instead, they’re perpendicular to the back of the phone, as this design allows smartphone makers to increase the size of the camera. The result is better optical zoom, which can then be combined with digital zoom to achieve more magnification.

Apple has been notably absent from the periscope camera trend, and the company isn’t going to use such a camera in an iPhone anytime soon, according to a well-informed insider.

Ming-Chi Kuo released another research note to investors (via MacRumors), addressing the various camera upgrades coming to future iPhones. Among them, there’s a telephoto lens, but it’s only the 2023 iPhone models that are going to get it.

2021 – iPhone 13

This year’s iPhones will feature a new Face ID transmitter, Kuo reports. The component will be made of plastic rather than glass, which was previously impossible:

In the past, it was widely believed that the reason the Tx lens had to adopt glass material was to avoid distortion due to the heat generated by VCSEL operation. Our latest survey indicates that the Face ID TX lens for the new 2H21 ‌iPhone‌ will be made of plastic instead of glass, thanks to improved coating technologies and that the Tx plastic lens suppliers are Largan and Genius, with Largan being…