Apple’s next iPhone may include a camera capable of providing DSLR-quality images. Daring Fireball’s John Gruber admitted as much during a recent episode of his podcast “The Talk Show” where he said a “birdie of a birdie” passed along the information.
Specifically, Gruber said he heard that next year’s camera might be the biggest camera jump ever on an iPhone. Sources told him that it’ll use some kind of two-lens system where the back camera somehow uses two lenses to capture up to DSLR-quality imagery.
The idea of two cameras on the back of a smartphone isn’t entirely original as HTC’s One M8, for example, shipped with such a setup earlier this year. In HTC’s system, the second camera is a depth-sensing camera that’s used by the phone’s software to offer up a selection of special effects.
Apple’s implementation sounds completely different.
One possibility for Apple’s new camera could be the just-announced Exmor RS IMX230 stacked CMOS sensor from Sony. Apple is no stranger to Sony sensors as they’ve been included in a number of past iPhones over the years.
Another possibility could be a two-lens system like the one being developed by Corephotonics. Their setup uses two lens at different focal lengths that provides a clever variant of optical zooming.
Apple has shipped an 8-megapixel rear camera with every iPhone model dating back to the iPhone 4 in 2011. Not willing to compete in the megapixel race, Apple has been content to improve other aspects of its camera system through the years which has kept it at or near the top in terms of overall image quality and capabilities.
Gruber has a pretty solid track record as it pertains to Apple rumors so we’ll have to see if this one picks up any steam over the coming months. With Apple having released its new batch of iPhones only two months ago, there’s plenty of time for the rumor mill to do its thing before the next generation arrives.