Apple is working to increase the levels of zoom offered by its iPhone cameras by adding a folding periscope to them, according to a new report.

Citing sources familiar with the development of the cameras, ETNews says that Apple is trying to create a folded periscope camera and is already working with suppliers to make it happen.

A traditional camera arrangement simply can’t offer the levels of zoom Apple wants. Not without making the device considerably thicker, at least.

According to the industry on Thursday, Apple is pushing to introduce triple camera to its iPhones. According to industry officials who are familiar with a situation related to development of iPhone cameras, Apple is currently looking for appropriate folded camera technology and patents in order to strengthen optical zoom feature of iPhones and it already had a discussion with a particular company.
Folded camera is able to provide high-magnification optical zoom without affecting the thickness of a smartphone. Optical zoom is determined by the distance between a lens and an image sensor. Longer focal distance can realize optical zoom with higher magnification.

If all of this sounds familiar, it’s because Samsung already has something very similar in the Galaxy S20 Ultra, with massive levels of zoom possible as a result.

Apple is said to have struggled to create its own version of the technology because much of it is covered by patents – patents that happen to be owned by Samsung Electronics. It isn’t clear whether there would be any potential for a patent licensing arrangement to be made. ETNews reports that it would be unlikely.

Some believe that Samsung Electronics and Samsung Electro-Mechanics will not cooperate with Apple even when Apple requests supply of folded cameras.

It’s unlikely such technology could make it into the 2021 iPhones at this point, but never say never.

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