We are still months away from Apple officially announcing its next flagship smartphone possibly called the iPhone 8. The anniversary edition iPhone 8 is expected to be a design marvel as most of Apple products are, but this time it is also likely to be equipped with some innovative features such as a 3D sensing camera. We have come across reports about Apple mulling incorporating such a technology to its upcoming iPhone, however, one of the latest information coming from a research note by a Morgan Stanley analyst adds more weight to the rumors. Also Read - iPhone 13 launch date and more details tipped as part of new leaksAlso Read - iPhone 12 Mini reaches end of production already, say rumours
Earlier this year, renowned Apple analyst Ming Chi-Kuo of KGI Securities revealed that Apple will be using a camera module with 3D sensing technology for its next-generation iPhone. This technology would be supplied by PrimeSense — the Israeli startup Apple acquired in 2013, which has also supplied similar technology to Microsoft for its first generation version of Kinect. Also Read - Flipkart Mobiles Bonanza sale top deals: iPhone SE, Poco X3 Pro and more on discount
Now, bolstering the claims, Morgan Stanley analyst Charlie Chan explains in his research note that Himax Technologies — a company believed to be providing 3D components to Apple for the iPhone 8 — has seen a rise in its share price this year owing to the deal struck with the Cupertino-based company. The analyst further goes on to explain as to why the Himax Technologies is a fit for the iPhone 8 stating that the company s wafer level optics (WLO) technology can reduce the size and fit the 3D sensing in smartphones, BGR Classic reports.
Currently, the 3D sensing technologies for PC or tablet can run facial recognition, gesture sensing, 3D modelling and photo shooting advancement. However, if incorporated in a smaller device like a smartphone, it has the potential to open up newer usage such as AR/VR apps for gaming or virtual social networks. Apple CEO Tim Cook has also acknowledged that going forward augmented reality (AR) will be the new innovation in smartphone technology and a 3D sensing camera fits quite right in the company s future plans. ALSO READ: Apple iPhone 8 to feature revolutionary front camera that lets you click 3D selfies: Report
To add to the latest report, Apple has also been awarded a patent for 3D facial recognition system earlier this March. Titled Enhanced face detection using depth information, the patent describes a technology that will essentially allow the iPhone to scan and process a digital image using a depth map to cut down on incorrect detection. The said technology applies specialized hardware for object recognition and the underlying software is capable of scanning a digital image or digital live video feed and decoding whether a portion of the frame contains a face. The face detection algorithms can further identify when people in the scene are located at different distances from the camera. For this depth mapping, infrared light emission system is used which projects a pattern of optical radiation onto a scene. This light is in turn processed and converted into a corresponding depth map.
However, one of the shortcomings of this proposed depth mapping system for facial recognition is that while it is capable of detecting faces, it lacks the ability to authenticate that face. Now, whether Apple uses the technology for biometric authentication or as a camera feature is yet unknown. However, if incorporated as a camera feature, the technology would allow users to capture 3D selfies with more depth something what we have seen with dual-camera modules that offer DSLR-like bokeh effect. Other usage of the technology could be in the field of gaming. It is speculated that this 3D sensing camera technology will allow users to place a 3D version of their head on a video game character s body allowing for a more immersive and interactive experience.
Although there is no official word on what the anniversary edition iPhone 8 will bring in tow, with speculations of a radical glass and metal design, 3D camera sensing technology, and an OLED display, it is poised to be one of the most expensive iPhone yet with a starting price of an eye-watering $1,000. ALSO READ: Apple iPhone 8 rumored to feature LG Innotek-made 3D dual-camera module