A newly published patent application shows that Apple is continuously working on improving the main camera in its iPhone, which already is the most popular camera in the world according to data collected by Flickr. The patent application is titled “VCM OIS Actuator Module” and was filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on July 6, 2012, UnwiredView reveals. The document describes methods of improving the autofocus (AF) and adding optical image stabilization (OIS) to future iPhone cameras, which would be a first for iOS devices. Earlier this week, a report claimed that the iPhone 6 will have an 8-megapixel camera with OIS features.
“Miniature cameras are becoming increasingly common in mobile electronic devices such as smartphones. There is a constant drive to improve performance of such cameras, while still maintaining the same envelope,” the document says “Demands on improvements to performance of such miniature cameras are constant, as are demands for continued miniaturization, given the added features and devices added to such mobile electronic devices.”
From the launch of the iPhone, Apple did not engage in a megapixels battle with rivals, while still providing one of the most appreciated mobile cameras around. First introduced with the iPhone 4S, the 8-megapixel camera was further refined in following iPhone 5 and iPhone 5s/5c generations to offer a better photo taking and video recording experience to users. While the iPhone 6 is rumored to have an 8-megapixel camera with OIS, it’s too early to tell whether the technology described in this patent will indeed be used in Apple’s next iPhone iterations in case they will indeed have OIS support.
A feature comparison between the iSight cameras of the iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and iPhone 4S as shown on Apple’s website is available below.