Apple May Introduce 'Biggest Camera Jump Ever' in Next-Generation iPhone

Apple may introduce its "biggest camera jump ever" in the next-generation iPhone, according to Daring Fireball's John Gruber (via The Tech Block). In a recent episode of his podcast The Talk Show, Gruber said that he heard "from a birdie of a birdie" that Apple is working on major camera improvements.

The specific thing I heard is that next years camera might be the biggest camera jump ever. I don't even know what sense this makes, but I've heard that it's some kind of weird two-lens system where the back camera uses two lenses and it somehow takes it up into DSLR quality imagery.

Gruber says that he's heard that Apple's rear camera could incorporate a two-lens system, which sounds somewhat similar to the Duo Lens camera that was introduced with the HTC One M8. In the One M8, a standard sensor is combined with an "Ultrapixel" sensor that lets in much more light to improve image quality. The secondary lens in the M8 is used to provide additional image information to the first lens, which also lets the focus be shifted.

Another two lens system that hints at what a two-lens setup in the iPhone might be capable of is being developed by Corephotonics. Corephotonics' system takes advantage of two lenses with separate focal lengths, switching between lenses to magnify distant subjects without the need for a traditional zoom.


With two lenses, the Corephotonics system compares images taken from both, choosing the clearest pixels for the best overall photo. It also utilizes a lens that only snaps black and white images, improving fidelity and allowing in additional light.

Given the fact that there's little information on what Apple's actually working on for its next-generation iPhone, it's hard to say whether a potential two-lens system would work in the same way as the above examples, but two-lens cameras are a new frontier that manufacturers are exploring in order to improve image quality while keeping devices slim.

Apple's iPhone has long been the most popular camera choice on image sharing site Flickr, and over the years, Apple has embraced iPhone photography. Each new iPhone iteration includes significant camera improvements, with its "S" upgrades often bringing the biggest improvements. With the iPhone 4s, for example, Apple introduced an improved 8-megapixel camera that marked a large jump in quality over the iPhone 4 camera, and with the iPhone 5s, Apple included an improved sensor, an aperture of f/2.2, a True-Tone flash feature, better autofocus, and a new "Slo-Mo" mode.

Apple introduced some impressive camera improvements with the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, including a new Apple-designed image signal processor with Focus Pixels, but it's possible even better camera improvements are being saved for the introduction of the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus in 2015.

Just yesterday longtime Apple supplier Sony unveiled a new 21-megapixel "stacked" sensor with ultra fast autofocus and 4K HDR video. While the 21-megapixel version is unlikely to make its way into iOS devices, it's possible that Apple's next iPhone could incorporate an upcoming Sony 16-megapixel sensor that includes the same impressive features.

Related Forum: iPhone

Top Rated Comments

bpeeps Avatar
124 months ago
Gotta sell that S update somehow.
Score: 48 Votes (Like | Disagree)
street.cory Avatar
124 months ago
We took the one thing you love about iPhone and doubled it. Introducing the iPhone 6S+, now with double protruding camera lenses.
Score: 32 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Orlandoech Avatar
124 months ago
Queue the "I dont want more MP, I want IQ". posts.

Queue "ugh, we need more storage capacity then" posts.

I personally would like an Image Sensor close to the level of a DSLR, 10+mp with improved IQ, HDR, Aperture, etc. Would also love the options to shoot in a Low, Med, High level of JPG quality and un/compressed files too.
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
derek4484 Avatar
124 months ago
I think 8MP is plenty "big" enough. Just keep working to improve the quality of photo. Taking 21 MP photos with your phone...what good does that do? The vast majority of people just post pics to facebook or twitter anyways. Who needs 13, 21, or 40 MP photos. But we all want better quality photos.
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
HobeSoundDarryl Avatar
124 months ago
I'm going to hold out for the 3-lens iPhone :rolleyes:

But 4 lenses (one at each corner) all protruding could give Barbie & Ken a great pool and Air Hockey table for the Barbie Dream Home.

What we really need is "thinner". That is always what is most important. Since the camera part seems to have a problem with thin, maybe it should go? And the battery is a big hog of internal space so if it could go too, Apple could really thin out the next iPhone. In fact, why not just move all of the internals OUTSIDE the future iPhone so that we can get the thinnest possible iPhone? ;)
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mozumder Avatar
124 months ago
They really need to get that image-stabilization into the smaller model first...
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

General Apps Messages

iMessage Down for Some Users [Update: Service Restored]

Thursday May 16, 2024 3:00 pm PDT by
The iMessage service that Apple users to send messages to one another appears to be down for some users, and messages are failing to go out or are taking an extra long time to send. There are numerous reports about the issue on social networks and a spike of outage reports on Down Detector, but Apple's System Status page is not yet reporting an outage. Update: Apple's status page says...
iOS 17

Troubling iOS 17.5 Bug Reportedly Resurfacing Old Deleted Photos

Wednesday May 15, 2024 5:29 am PDT by
There are concerning reports on Reddit that Apple's latest iOS 17.5 update has introduced a bug that causes old photos that were deleted – in some cases years ago – to reappear in users' photo libraries. After updating their iPhone, one user said they were shocked to find old NSFW photos that they deleted in 2021 suddenly showing up in photos marked as recently uploaded to iCloud. Other...
iphone 15 pro max vs iphone 16 pro max

iPhone 16 Pro Max Looks This Much Bigger Beside iPhone 15 Pro Max

Thursday May 16, 2024 4:51 am PDT by
This year's upcoming iPhone 16 Pro Max is expected to get a boost in overall size from 6.7-inches to 6.9-inches, and a new image gives us a good idea of how the current iPhone 15 Pro Max compares to what could be Apple's largest ever iPhone. The image above, posted on X by ZONEofTECH, shows a dummy model representing the ‌iPhone 16 Pro‌ Max alongside an actual iPhone 15 Pro Max. Dummy...
iOS 17

iOS 17.5 Bug May Also Resurface Deleted Photos on Wiped, Sold Devices

Friday May 17, 2024 12:24 pm PDT by
A bug in iOS 17.5 is apparently causing photos that have been deleted to reappear, and the issue seems to impact even iPhones and iPads that have been erased and sold off to other people. A Reddit user wiped an iPad following Apple's guidelines in September of 2023 before selling it off to a friend. That friend updated the iPad to iPadOS 17.5 this week, and began seeing the Reddit user's old ...
oled m4 ipad pro grainy display reports

OLED iPad Pro Users Report 'Grainy' Displays, But It May Not Be a Defect

Friday May 17, 2024 5:57 am PDT by
Some new M4 iPad Pro models are exhibiting a visible static grain pattern across the OLED display, according to several user reports on Reddit (1, 2, 3) and the MacRumors Forums. Image credit: MacRumors user bk215 Users who see the grain generally report that it is most noticeable in dark environments with the display set at a low to medium brightness while viewing content with gray or muted...
Delta Hands On Feature

iPhone Emulators on the App Store: Game Boy, N64, PS1, PSP, and More

Thursday May 16, 2024 12:45 pm PDT by
In April, Apple updated its guidelines to allow retro game emulators on the App Store, and several popular emulators have already been released. The emulators released so far allow iPhone users to play games released for older consoles from Nintendo, Sony, SEGA, Atari, and others. A list of some popular emulators available on the App Store so far follows. Released Delta Delta is...