If 2018 was the year of notch then 2019 has already proven to be the death of notch on smartphones. Xiaomi, Samsung, Oppo, Vivo, Realme and Asus have all launched new smartphones that feature full screen displays without a notch or cut-out of any form. The biggest challenge for smartphone makers to create a truly bezel-less fullscreen smartphone has been the front-facing camera, microphone and other sensors. The above mentioned smartphone makers have achieved achieving such a design and form factor by adopting a pop-up selfie camera mechanism. Asus, has in fact, gone a step further by including a flip camera mechanism that does dual duty of front as well as rear camera. Also Read - Realme X First Impressions: Pop-up selfie camera, in-display fingerprint scanner and more
The holy grail in this quest to design a true all screen smartphone experience would be to embed the front camera under the display, just like the optical fingerprint sensors placed underneath the display. There are already reports of Huawei, Samsung and Oppo working to put a camera underneath the display and make it see through the display and now a patent application suggests Xiaomi could be the newest addition to this growing list of smartphone makers working on such a technology. Also Read - Xiaomi Mi Band 4 first real-life images leaked online
Sudhanshu Ambhore (@Sudhanshu1414) June 1, 2019
The patent filed by Xiaomi has surfaced on the internet which shows the Chinese smartphone maker’s ambition to introduce an in-display camera on its devices. The translated version of the patent application states that Xiaomi plans to include a secondary display under the main display which will be in front of the selfie camera and light sensor. It will reportedly work in such a way that the camera will become visible whenever required and invisible when not in use. How Xiaomi will make the camera visible or invisible depending on need remains unknown but the company seems to have at least deviced a plan to make it possible.
The explanation provided by Xiaomi is simple and vague at the same time. It does not clearly explain how introduction of a secondary display will allow the camera to see through the main display. Xiaomi, in order to protect its design, is not expected to share more information. Oppo has shared a teaser for its in-display camera tech and is planning to launch first smartphone with such a feature later this year. The notch was cool until pop-up selfie cameras became new normal but it seems that they will all end up being just another fad in the tech world.