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Apple works on a new 3D sensor for the rear camera

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IPhone 7 Plus camera

Apple is developing a technology of 3D depth detection for the rear camera in order to incorporate it into the 2019 iPhones production, according to a new report of Bloomberg It has just been published.

The 3D sensor system will be different from the one found on the front camera of the iPhone X and it is said that it is the next big step to turn the smartphone into a leading device as far as augmented reality is concerned.

Apple is evaluating a different technology which currently used in the TrueDepth sensor system which is integrated into the front camera of the iPhone X. The existing system is based on a structured light technique that projects a pattern of 30,000 laser points on the user's face and measures the distortion to generate an accurate 3D image that It is used for user authentication. The sensor planned for the rear camera would use a “flight time approach” that calculates the time it takes for a laser to bounce around surrounding objects to create a three-dimensional image of the environment.

The existing TrueDepth camera would continue to be used on the front of future iPhones, while the new system would provide the most advanced 3D detection capability with the “flight time” system to the rear camera, according to the sources consulted. Conversations with manufacturers are already ongoing and include Infineon, Sony, STMicroelectronics and Panasonic. It is said that the tests are still in the early stages and could end up being the ones used in the phones.

With the launch of iOS11, Apple introduced the ARKit software framework that allows iPhone developers create augmented reality experiences in your applications The addition of a rear 3D sensor could theoretically increase the ability of virtual objects to interact with environments and improve the illusion of solidity. According to reports, Apple suffered production problems when manufacturing the sensor on the iPhone X, since the components used in the sensor set must be assembled with a high degree of accuracy. According Bloomberg, while "flight time" technology uses a more advanced image sensor than the one in the iPhone X's front camera, does not require the same level of precision during assembly. This could make a rear-facing 3D sensor easier to produce at high volume.

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