The iPhone will get a periscope lens for its telephoto camera, a new report says, but don’t expect it before 2023.
This is according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo (via MacRumors), who previously said the iPhone might get such a camera as early as 2022, but has now pushed his prediction into 2023.
Smartphones with periscope lens cameras have been around for a few years. China’s Oppo was the first company to show a working prototype phone with such a camera, giving it 5x lossless zoom. The phone’s periscope lens consisted of two lenses, one of which was positioned vertically, and the other horizontally, similar to the way a submarine periscope works.
Later on, other smartphone makers, including Huawei, launched phones with similar camera technology. For the user, the benefits boil down to better optical zoom. Apple’s iPhones currently have a maximal 2.5x optical zoom, but a periscope lens could push that further to 5x or more.
While this new iPhone is probably more than two years away, Kuo also shared some details about the iPhones coming in 2021 and 2022.
The 2021 iPhones will have an upgraded telephoto lens, and a new Face ID transmitter, he said, and the telephoto lens will be further upgraded on the iPhones coming in 2022. Next year’s iPhones will also have a new “unibody” lens design, which should reduce the size of the selfie camera. This, in turn, could pave the way for an iPhone with a punch-hole camera cutout on the display, which would replace the current notch.
Finally, Kuo shared some news on Apple’s rumored mixed reality headset. It will have 15 optical camera modules, he said, with eight cameras used for the augmented reality experience, six for “innovative biometrics,” and one for environmental detection.
The headset will be light (perhaps 100-200 grams) and portable, though not fully mobile, Kuo said. It would have high-end, micro-OLED displays, and overall offer a better experience than current VR products. It should launch in 2022, and be priced at around $1,000, which is significantly lower than some previous estimates we’ve heard.