Oppo Unveils Third Attempt At Under-Screen Front-Facing Camera Tech

Apple next year is expected to ditch the iPhone notch and adopt a punch-hole design for its front-facing TrueDepth camera array. Meanwhile, Android maker Oppo continues to publicize new iterations of its under-screen camera technology, which it has yet to feature in a shipped phone.

oppo 3rd gen under screen camera1

Prototype device featuring Oppo's USC

Oppo unveiled its first go at under-screen camera tech back in June 2019, and this is its third attempt at refining the system. According to the Chinese phone maker, the new version allows for a selfie camera to be placed under the display "without compromising the integrity of the screen."

In previous iterations, Oppo improved the camera quality at the expense of the display, by reducing the pixel density in the area of the screen that covers the camera in order to let more light in.

This time, it's taken a different tack, by shrinking the size of each pixel without decreasing the number of pixels "to ensure a 400-ppi high-quality display even in the camera area." It's also replaced the traditional screen wiring with transparent wiring material.

oppo 3rd gen under screen camera2

A prototype device featuring Oppo's USC

As a result, Oppo says users should notice "almost no visual difference" between the portion of the screen where the camera resides and the rest of the display, and to back up that claim, it has released an image of a prototype phone showing a black-and-white ebook app filling up the screen.

The company has also publicized a sample photo taken by the under-screen camera, although without several shots taken in different conditions, it's hard to judge its capabilities, and Oppo is still falling back on imaging AI algorithms to reduce some of the negative side effects typically found in under-screen cameras, such as blurry images and image glare.

oppo 3rd gen under screen camera3

A selfie photo taken with Oppo USC prototype

Oppo hasn't said when it intends to bring a phone to market with an under-screen camera, but it won't be the first. Chinese mobile maker ZTE took that plaudit with its own fullscreen display-enabling technology appearing last year in the Axon 20 5G.

ZTE's approach effectively used two screens simultaneously – a small square one on top of the selfie camera inside the phone's main OLED display – but the square was sometimes visible when using some apps, and the selfie shots were also improved artificially by software algorithms to compensate for haze, glare, and color cast issues.

Long-term, Apple is thought to be working towards a notchless ‌iPhone‌ design. The notch has been a controversial design decision since it debuted on the ‌‌‌iPhone‌‌‌ X in 2017, and it has always felt like a stopgap on the way to an ‌‌‌iPhone‌‌‌ with a truly edge-to-edge display, but when that will appear – and how it will be realized – remains unknown.

This year's upcoming iPhone 13 will have a slightly smaller notch, while next year rumors suggest this will be replaced by a punch-hole design that's previously been used for some Android devices, including Samsung smartphones. Where Apple goes from there is unclear.

According to one rumor dating back to 2019, Apple has prototyped at least one iPhone with no notch, with the TrueDepth camera sensors for Face ID instead housed in the thin bezel above the display.

Given that Apple is believed to be relying on a more tightly integrated camera module to achieve the smaller notch expected on the ‌iPhone 13‌, miniaturization could be one way for Apple to bring a truly edge-to-edge display to market one day while avoiding the attendant problems that come with hiding a camera under the screen, but mass-producing such technology could still be years away.

Tag: Oppo

Top Rated Comments

UKitsme Avatar
14 months ago
looks like that girl has taken a selfie with her hands behind back?
Score: 31 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Nimrad Avatar
14 months ago

Being years behind bargain Android phones is getting old, Apple has the money and the talent, let’s be first for once again. A 20x optical zoom/lens whatever would also be nice.
Apple is not interested first at doing the obvious thing everybody else has half-assed solutions to first. There's a reason they're not first, and that's because it's not good enough yet. Same with folding screen. The reason bargain Android phones are first is because it's just a marketing strategy for them being first no matter how much it sucks. Apple probably did it better in-house already, but still not good enough.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
redbeard331 Avatar
14 months ago
It would be nice to see Apple surprise everyone when the 13 pro drops with a full screen display with no notch, punch holes, or anything else, just all screen. Being years behind bargain Android phones is getting old, Apple has the money and the talent, let’s be first for once again. A 20x optical zoom/lens whatever would also be nice.
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
iapplelove Avatar
14 months ago

It would be nice to see Apple surprise everyone when the 13 pro drops with a full screen display with no notch, punch holes, or anything else, just all screen. Being years behind bargain Android phones is getting old, Apple has the money and the talent, let’s be first for once again. A 20x optical zoom/lens whatever would also be nice.
The best they can do is shrink the notch, and inflate the price tag.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
iapplelove Avatar
14 months ago

It takes billions to develop an operating system, research and maintaining and distributing it.
Android is free to telcos, (adding their own layers of software), free to “manufactures”, and to anyone that feed Google with your info. Imagine how easy is to add a few features here and there, and for people like you saying, competition es gooood, they are ahead of Apple!!! So much for inflate the price tag!!!
Get yourself a Blackberry to see how was Android before copying every comma form Apple
Jayyyyzzzzzzuuuuuzzzzz
Apple can’t even get auto correct to work fluently. So please, spare me the apple sob story.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
contacos Avatar
14 months ago
It should be clear to everyone that the Notch looks like this partially on purpose. You can easily recognize an iPhone that way and if a lot of people have one thing, a lot of other people will want the same thing, even if it is subconsciously. Same with the AirPods looking like toothbrushes and coincidentally only available in WHITE. You immediately know what it is. Can’t say the same for Sony or whatever headphones in ones ears
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

iphone 14 cads mysmartprice

Alleged iPhone 14 CAD Renders Reveal Virtually No Design Changes With Same Notch and Rear Camera Design

Thursday March 17, 2022 2:38 am PDT by
Following basic iPhone 14 Pro CAD renders surfacing online yesterday, new images today alleged to be renders for the lower-end iPhone 14 models have been leaked, showing the same iPhone 13 notch and rear camera design. The renders, shared by MySmartPrice, obtained through an "industry insider," depict a very similar design for the assumed two lower-end models of the iPhone 14 lineup compared ...
iphone 13 gaming a15

China-Based BOE Rumored to Supply Displays for iPhone 15 Pro in 2023

Monday January 24, 2022 1:57 am PST by
China-based display maker BOE will supply Apple with OLED LTPO displays for the higher-end models of the iPhone 15 lineup in 2023, according to a new report from The Elec. Following unsuccessful attempts by the Chinese maker in 2020 to supply displays for the iPhone 12 series, BOE joined Apple's list of display makers to produce panels for the baseline 6.1-inch iPhone 13 earlier this year....
iphone 14 pro display schematics

Alleged iPhone 14 Pro Display Schematic Shows True Size of Pill-Shaped and Circular Cutouts Expected to Replace the Notch

Saturday February 26, 2022 11:25 pm PST by
An image alleged to be the display schematic for the iPhone 14 Pro series has emerged online, offering us a look at the true size of the pill-shaped and circular cutout design expected to debut on the high-end 2022 iPhones in replacement of the notch. The image first emerged on Weibo and was later shared by Apple leaker Jon Prosser who claims to have been able to "independently" confirm...
iPhone 14 Hole Punch Feature

iPhone 15 Pro Rumored to Feature Under-Screen Face ID System From Samsung

Tuesday March 22, 2022 7:38 pm PDT by
Samsung Display is developing new under-panel camera technology that Apple plans to use to hide Face ID under the display on next year's tentatively named "iPhone 15 Pro" models, according to sources cited by Korean website The Elec. While rumors suggest that this year's "iPhone 14 Pro" models will feature both a "hole-punch" and a pill-shaped cutout for the front camera and Face ID...
iphone 14 pill shaped notch mockup

Mockup Shows What iPhone 14 With Pill-Shaped Cutout Could Look Like in Your Hand

Monday January 10, 2022 2:42 am PST by
The upcoming high-end iPhone 14 is expected to come with a pill-shaped cutout rather than the notch that's been present on the iPhone in some form since 2017. While we're still months away from the next iPhone, we already have a solid idea of what a pill-shaped cutout would look like in practical use. A mockup on Twitter by developer Jeff Grossman shows, at least on the Home Screen, what a...
ted lasso notchless phone

No, That Notchless iPhone Spotted in 'Ted Lasso' Isn't the iPhone 13

Tuesday August 31, 2021 2:15 am PDT by
Recent sightings of a notchless iPhone in highly popular Apple TV+ comedy "Ted Lasso" have led to sensational headlines suggesting this is a canny bit of product placement on Apple's part and that the iPhone 13 will be notchless. In actuality – and this could go without saying – the phone in question is very likely just showing a poorly superimposed display added in post-production. Notchless ...
iPhone 14 Mock Pill

Leaker Says iPhone 14 Pro to Feature Pill-Shaped Camera Cutout With Face ID Under the Display

Thursday January 6, 2022 7:21 am PST by
iPhone 14 Pro models will feature a pill-shaped camera cutout at the top of the display, with the notch removed, according to tweets shared by leaker @dylandkt, who has proven to be a reliable source of Apple-related rumors over the last year or so. To accommodate this change, the leaker said Face ID hardware will be moved under the display. While it has been widely reported that iPhone 14...
iOS 15

Apple Studio Display Runs Full Version of iOS 15.4

Friday March 18, 2022 5:40 am PDT by
The Apple Studio Display runs a full version of iOS 15.4, Daring Fireball's John Gruber has highlighted. In System Information, under "Graphics/Displays," the Studio Display's software can be seen, showing that it runs "Version 15.4 (Build 19E241)." This is the exact same build number as iOS 15.4 and iPadOS 15.4, indicating that the Studio Display runs the full version of iOS. The Studio...

Popular Stories

iPhone 14 Dummies 1 Feature

Everything Rumored for Apple's September Event: iPhone 14, Apple Watch Pro and More

Friday August 12, 2022 2:34 pm PDT by
There's just about a month to go until Apple holds its annual September event focusing on new iPhone and Apple Watch models. We thought we'd take a quick look at everything that's rumored for Apple's September event to give MacRumors readers a rundown on what to expect when the first fall event rolls around. iPhone 14 The iPhone 14 can probably be described more as an "iPhone 13S" because...
airpods pro black background

AirPods Pro 2: Five New Features and Improvements to Expect

Sunday August 14, 2022 3:28 pm PDT by
Apple's second-generation AirPods Pro are finally nearing launch, with a release expected later this year. If you are considering upgrading to the new AirPods Pro once they are released, keep reading for a list of five new features to expect. In addition to all-new features, the second-generation AirPods Pro will likely adopt some features added to the standard AirPods last year. H2 Chip ...
z fold 4 1

Hands-On With Samsung's Latest Foldable Smartphones, the Galaxy Z Fold and Z Flip

Friday August 12, 2022 12:46 pm PDT by
Samsung this week launched its fourth-generation foldable devices, the $1,000 Galaxy Z Flip and the $1,800 Galaxy Z Fold. Though there's no sign of a comparable Apple foldable device on the horizon, rumors suggest prototypes are in the works, so we thought we'd take a look at Samsung's newest smartphones to see what Apple needs to measure up to when a foldable iPhone does come out. Subscribe ...
top stories 13aug2022

Top Stories: New Battery Percentage Icon in iOS 16, USB-C AirPods Rumor, and More

Saturday August 13, 2022 6:00 am PDT by
This week brought some shocking news for iOS 16 beta testers, with Apple bringing back the iPhone battery percentage to the status bar after a number of years. Other news and rumors this week included word that Apple has started recording portions of its media event planned for next month to introduce the iPhone 14 and Apple Watch Series 8, claims about iPhone 14 Pro pricing and Apple's...
iCloud General Feature

Apple Remains Silent About Plans to Detect Known CSAM Stored in iCloud Photos

Saturday August 13, 2022 1:52 pm PDT by
It has now been over a year since Apple announced plans for three new child safety features, including a system to detect known Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) images stored in iCloud Photos, an option to blur sexually explicit photos in the Messages app, and child exploitation resources for Siri. The latter two features are now available, but Apple remains silent about its plans for the CSAM...
apple watch se

Apple Watch SE vs. Apple Watch Series 8: New Features to Expect If You've Waited to Upgrade

Monday August 15, 2022 2:44 am PDT by
The Apple Watch SE was announced in September 2020 and has been a popular Apple Watch model for customers looking for their first smartwatch or an affordable Apple Watch. Apple Watch SE customers may be wondering, however, what's in store for them with the upcoming Apple Watch Series 8 and what new features they can expect. Continue reading to find out. Apple Watch SE vs. Apple Watch Series ...