Apple may have lined up some pretty great camera surprises in store for future iPhones, and the dual lens set on the 7 Plus
might just be a harbinger of things to come, if the latest report out of Korean media is to be believed.
Sources close to LG Innotek, the subsidiary that is in charge of developing new technologies and camera modules for LG devices, have tipped that Apple is working with the team to source 3D camera modules for testing and eventual deployment in future iPhones. Let's not forget that LG was the first to out a phone
with 3D camera of sorts, the Optimus 3D
way back in 2011.
LinX used camera array sets to achieve depth mapping and wide color presentation by combining several small modules
Of course, 3D never picked up the way TV makers hoped, but what Apple is trying to achieve here might be something completely different. The sourcing of camera modules for a 3D array may have something to do with the technology it acquired when it bought LinX
for $20 million last year.
LinX uses a set of tiny multi-aperture cameras half the height of standard mobile cameras, and controls them with an algorithm that allows "stunning color images and high accuracy depth maps
." The kicker here is that the LinX software was claimed to derive depth stats from each pixel
to create an accurate depth map that can later be used for 3D image reconstruction, and that could be what Apple is now testing. Tim Cook already mentioned that AR is the next brave frontier
in mobile imaging and user experience, so hopefully we will see the alleged 3D mapping results from LG-sourced camera units as soon as the next iPhone models hit the tape.