Before Apple unveiled the iPhone 7, I wrote that Samsung would surely copy this latest iPhone in the future. At the time, I argued that Samsung would also remove the 3.5mm headphone jack from future smartphones, even though it defended the aging port and mocked Apple during its Galaxy Note 7 launch. That may very well happen with the Galaxy S8 next year. And it might not be the only thing Samsung decides to take from this year’s new iPhones.

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A patent application discovered in South Korea reveals that Samsung is working on changing the user interface of its camera app to accommodate new touch gestures that would let users easily zoom in and out while taking a photo. The application was filed on September 13th, a week after the iPhone 7 was unveiled, GalaxyClub notes.

It’s not clear why Samsung would want to patent a new way of zooming, since all current smartphones have such capabilities, including Samsung handsets. But it’s easy to speculate on why Samsung is doing it.

samsung-camera-ux-zoom-patentImage Source: KIPRIS via GalaxyClub

Rumors have already suggested that the Galaxy S8 will come with a dual camera system similar to the iPhone 7 Plus. It’s likely that such a camera would have an optical zoom feature, just like Apple’s iSight Duo camera. In that case, users would need a quick way to zoom in and out to take advantage of optical zoom while capturing photos and recording videos.

Sure, Apple was not the first company to use a dual-lens camera setup. But it’s likely that Apple’s approach will be more popular with buyers than past dual-lens camera implementations from competitors. And if that’s the case, Samsung will probably want to offer the same feature in its phones as soon as possible, and then tell us how Galaxy phones have better cameras than the iPhone 7 Plus.

It’s only fair, since Apple is now copying Samsung’s exploding Galaxy Note 7.

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