Apple is again heavily rumored to be adding a periscope camera to a future iPhone, with the current rumors being that the 2022 model will be the first to feature the new tech.
By adding a periscope and effectively bending light, Apple can move the image sensor further away from the lens and improve the levels of zoom as a result.
It’s a trick the likes of Samsung have already pulled off – and it seems Apple will need a Samsung sibling company to pull it off as well, according to The Elec.
Apple is behind in patents in actuators, the people said. Samsung uses ball guide actuators for its folded zoom camera __ the ball rolls around to move the lens barrel. Apple currently uses springs to move the lens barrels, which falls behind in speed and accuracy to ball guides. Ball guide method also uses less power and is more durable. This becomes important as more lens are used and bigger image sensors are used in cameras.
The problem is that Apple will need to use LG InnoTek to buy the parts it needs and then have the third party handle construction. All to avoid Samsung Electronics kicking up a fuss over its joint ownership of the patents owned by Samsung Electro-Mechanics.
Samsung Electronics will also unlikely allow Samsung Electro-Mechanics to supply the modules directly to Apple. Some of the patents related to actuators and other components are also co-owned by Samsung Electronics, Jahwa Electronics and other suppliers.
Apple can bypass these issues such as patents by having LG InnoTek secure the components from Samsung Electro-Mechanics.
It all sounds like corporate posturing and will surely be settled with money, but one thing seems clear – a future iPhone will benefit from an improved zoom capability. Whether it’s 2022 and it involves Samsung technology, or not.
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