A new report has detailed that Apple’s forthcoming iPhone 8 might leverage 3D laser for faster autofocus and advanced augmented reality features.
Thanks to a new report courtesy of Fast Company, we’ve got an interesting tidbit to deal with ahead of Apple’s final iPhone 8 reveal later this year – that the handset might be the company’s first major play into augmented reality with the debut of a new, rear-facing 3D laser.
Fast Company reports that the iPhone 8 might use a VCSEL (vertical-cavity-surface-emitting-laser) in its vertically aligned dual camera array to assist not only with improving autofocus speed, but analysing depth and measurements in one’s immediate surroundings.
The report cites that Apple has been sourcing VCSEL components for the iPhone 8, and that each module would apparently set the Cupertino company back $2 USD.
The news is significant, as the addition would mark Apple’s first major hardware drive into augmented reality beyond the impending introduction of ARKit in iOS 11.
Previously, some reports have speculated that the iPhone 8’s front-facing camera may leverage 3D capabilities for the purpose of facial recognition – given that the handset is reportedly facing design difficulties around the adoption of a Touch ID sensor beneath its primary display.
Other handsets have, in the past, leveraged a rear-facing laser for the purposes of camera autofocus; LG’s flagship G3 was one such effort that got the ball rolling thanks to a laser sensor that was co-opted from one of the company’s vacuum cleaner models.
It remains to be seen whether a VCSEL system will indeed debut aboard the iPhone 8 – Fast Company notes that the features intended to debut on the product could ‘remain fluid until deep in the Summer’.
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