Lenovo Z5s may beat the Galaxy S10 to the market with a 'punch hole' in-screen camera

Lenovo Z5s may beat the Galaxy S10 to the market with a 'punch hole' in-screen camera
The Lenovo Z5s could be one of our earliest real looks at the next big trend in smartphone design – displays with camera 'punch holes'

It's been a year now since the "notch" craze started and we are ready to move a step forward to getting a phone with an all-screen face that has a solid-state front-facing camera. We've been recently seeing Chinese phones that employ a slide-screen design to hide the selfie camera — and they're interesting in their own right — but there's little doubt that a solid-state solution would be better in almost every way.

That's why companies like Samsung and Huawei are working on a design that gets rid of the notch by building the front-facing camera into the display. This is what the media is now referring to as the "punch hole." First, we got the notch, now we get the hole. But hey, this new solution is arguably better for screen-to-body ratio (though it may introduce some UI design hurdles, depending on the placement of the camera).

We know that the Samsung Galaxy S10 is likely going to have an in-display front-facing camera next year, but Lenovo may beat the South Korean tech giant to the punch. A recent Weibo leak, discovered by SlashLeaks reveals a new Lenovo phone, allegedly called the Z5s, which has a front-facing camera cutout at the top center of its screen.



From what we've seen from the leaked hands-on video and photos of the Lenovo Z5s, the camera hole actually seems a lot less obtrusive than a notch. The opening itself is relatively small and fits neatly within the status bar, without making it too big. The only question left is, should the camera be centered or offset to the left/right corner? Samsung and Huawei are rumored to be working on displays with the camera hole in the top left corner, which could potentially be a better placement, as it is less likely to get in the way of UI elements.

Although punched displays may offer more real estate than notched ones, many people are concerned that the opening will still get in the way of on-screen content. This will likely be addressed by introducing a software feature that restricts content — say, a video or a game — from displaying under the camera. Since the screen is going to be OLED, the black bar will be like getting a bit of the top bezel back when you need it. A perfect solution? Not really, but it is the next step toward the all-screen phone.

The Lenovo Z5s has already passed certification by the TENAA in China, so its release on the Asian market may be just around the bend. In-screen selfie cameras are certainly an exciting prospect and could be the bridge between the notch and the all-screen phone. It's funny how in a matter of two years, we went from phones with very thin side bezels but bigger ones at the top and bottom, to increasingly shrinking notches and just a tiny bit of chin, to pretty much completely bezel-less displays with tiny camera holes in them. Give it another year or two, and we'll have truly all-screen phones.


Leaked photos of the Lenovo Z5s

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19 Comments

1. Sparkxster

Posts: 1245; Member since: Mar 31, 2017

I like the punched hole camera placement in the center.

2. tedkord

Posts: 17463; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

No holes. No cutouts. No notches. Just keep the slim top/bottom bezel.

15. sissy246

Posts: 7129; Member since: Mar 04, 2015

Agree But if they have to do it the hole is better then the ugly notch.

3. Cat97

Posts: 1976; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

Much better looking than a notch, that's for sure. Too bad no one besides Apple can totally remove of the chin, it would have been a very nice piece of hardware.

10. Back_from_beyond

Posts: 1472; Member since: Sep 04, 2015

It's not a matter of can or can't, but removing the chin makes the plastic substrates significantly more vulnerable. Considering the prices Apple charges for screen replacement on these models it makes for a nice cash cow for them.

12. JMartin22

Posts: 2387; Member since: Apr 30, 2013

I think it’s also a very expensive fabrication process that requires certain type of machinery. It’s really only worth it for Apple or Samsung to achieve that feat.

16. eelpout

Posts: 34; Member since: Oct 13, 2016

the iPhone XR *has* a chin for their LCD driver component, Apple just plays with the entire bezel-surround width to make it look less noticeable. I do wish these companies would just shrink the top end screen down a mm to match the bottom chin space. Meizu does it and it looks fine. I'd rather have balance myself.

4. worldpeace

Posts: 3135; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

Judging from Lenovo's hyping history, they "might" announce it first, then they'll delay it 6-12 months before actually sell it.

5. Peaceboy

Posts: 640; Member since: Oct 11, 2018

This one is better than Samsung A-hole placement. Why woyld Samsung place on the left? Stupid

8. worldpeace

Posts: 3135; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

Samsung's placement make that hole less distracting when watching movie or playing games.

9. koioz

Posts: 183; Member since: Nov 29, 2018

Why do you even care mr. iphone fangay?

11. bambamboogy02

Posts: 842; Member since: Jun 23, 2012

HAHA! "...A-hole placement."

6. monoke

Posts: 1197; Member since: Mar 14, 2015

'Hey mate u got a speck of something there on ur screen. U might wanna wipe it off.' 'I can't.'

7. JustFluffy

Posts: 4; Member since: Nov 16, 2018

Will be interesting to see who the display supplier is. If the allegations from South Korea are true, they COULD be using stolen technology!

19. mootu

Posts: 1541; Member since: Mar 16, 2017

The tech that was "supposedly" stolen is for flexible OLED, absolutly nothing to do with this type of panel.

21. JustFluffy

Posts: 4; Member since: Nov 16, 2018

Aight, I guess I didn't read the full article. Thanks.

17. power21

Posts: 80; Member since: Jul 15, 2015

the punch hole looks worse than the damn notch. it's too distracting.

20. OneLove123

Posts: 1257; Member since: Aug 28, 2018

You can’t be serious

18. OneLove123

Posts: 1257; Member since: Aug 28, 2018

Looks good

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