Phone

Samsung’s new 5x optical zoom camera is ready for its smartphones

We’ve already stressed the need for Samsung to up the ante in the camera department for its flagship smartphones. Its competitors are doing some very interesting things in this area. Samsung certainly doesn’t want to lag behind so it’s a good sign that it has been working on further improving its camera technologies.

Samsung Electro-Mechanics has announced that it’s now mass-producing a 5x optical zoom camera module. This means that the component is ready for use in smartphones. The question is, which Samsung phone will be the first to get it?

The new 5x optical zoom camera won’t protrude from the back

The announcement follows Samsung’s reported acquisition of Israeli camera technology company Corephotonics. It had designed 5x and 10x telephoto solutions for companies like Oppo previously. We have talked about how this acquisition will vitalize Samsung’s mobile cameras before.

Samsung Electro-Mechanics started developing camera modules in 2003. It made the world’s first dual camera module with image stabilization as well as the variable aperture module which debuted with the Galaxy S9. Its latest creation is actually thinner than a 6mm conventional 2x optical zoom lens.

The 5x module is just 5mm thick which means that it would be able to sit flush with the body of the smartphone. It would be a significant design improvement if the module were to not protrude from the back. This was done by arranging the sensor and lenses sideways and by utilizing the principle of reflecting light in a periscope. That’s the same principle that Corephotonics had used for its designs. It allows for a longer telephoto lens to be fit inside a slim device.

So, will we get to see it in the Galaxy Note 10? Samsung’s next flagship is rumored to have a vertical rear camera setup, not unlike the iPhone. It’s within the realm of possibility for the Galaxy Note 10 to get the 5x optical zoom module. However, there’s an interesting rumor out today from @UniverseIce, who claims that “the most creative Samsung smartphone” in the second half of this year won’t be the Galaxy Fold or the Galaxy Note 10. Without revealing any specifics, he says that “you just have to wait.”

Samsung has recently developed a habit of introducing new technologies with mid-range devices. The Galaxy S10 wasn’t its first device with a punch hole display, it was the Galaxy A8s which didn’t see a wide release. Or the fact that the Galaxy A9 (2018) was not just Samsung’s but the world’s first quad-camera smartphone. So the possibility remains that there might be an entirely new device in the second half of this year with this camera module. Like many of you, though, I’ll keep my fingers crossed for the Galaxy Note 10 as well.


18 Comments

Sign in »

18
Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

locarno
locarno

Sensor on the photo is single or dual lens ?

locarno
locarno

“in the second half of this year won’t be the Galaxy Fold or the Galaxy Note 10.”

Maybe they introduce new foldable phone or new series. S, Note and X ?

locarno
locarno

“That’s the same principle that Corephotonics had used for its designs.”

Samsung could not come up with this idea ?

locarno
locarno

“It made the world’s first dual camera module with image stabilization”

You mean here camera from Note 8 ?

locarno
locarno

“like Oppo previously.”

And Huawei !

PookiePrancer
PookiePrancer

Probably won’t be on the Note 10. And that would be an embarrassment.

martindale
martindale

Why do you insist on calling it an “optical zoom” when the zoom mechanism is not optical? These are still fixed focal length optics. Computational, not optical, methods are used to transition (i.e. to zoom) between the fixed focal lengths.

Or are you actually reporting what would be a ground breaking innovation, the successful miniaturisation of moving-optics 5x zoom lens to smartphone dimensions?

Biransahin
Biransahin

No, Adnan is perfectly correct, it’s not computational, that would imply digital zoom. This is not digital zoom. The trick here is that it uses a mirror like you find on a periscope. As a result the physical zoom is actually happening as on a normal zoom lens, but turned sideways inside the phone. It’s not even new. Huawei are already doing it. Maybe you didn’t read the full article. There are also teardowns showing how it works on the Huawei flagship. Check it out it’s brilliant technology.

martindale
martindale

You demonstrate so well how the rubbish written by journalists filters down to become accepted wisdom by readers. The periscope optics to which you refer allow the axis of the lens to lie parallel with the plane of the phone’s body, as you correctly describe, so that the length of the lens (hence its focal length) is no longer restricted to the (perpendicular) thickness of the phone. This still gives you a fixed focal length lens, albeit a longer focal length than would otherwise be possible. However it still does not allow for the focal length to change, hence it… Read more »

PookiePrancer
PookiePrancer

A lot of people don’t understand these phones are providing 1x and 5x optical zoom…period. The rest is all software.

martindale
martindale

You included. There is no optical zoom, period. And you can’t have a 1x “zoom” anyway, optical, computational or any other flavour. To “zoom” means to seamlessly shift along a continuum of focal lengths. So a 5x zoom will vary focal length by a factor of 5, continuously, for example from 24mm to 120mm, with consequent continuous smooth change in angle of view. That does not make a 120mm lens a “5x optical zoom”, any more than it makes a 24mm lens become a “1x optical zoom”. Both remain what they are, fixed focal length lenses. Software can be used… Read more »

PookiePrancer
PookiePrancer

No, I misused “zoom” instead of “magnification.” Yes, you get a fixed 1x image, or one fixed at 5x magnification. I get what you’re saying.

locarno
locarno

So this is fake news ?

ssking
ssking

I hope they’ll keep the 2x zoom in addition to the 5x

Biransahin
Biransahin

It would be nice, 5X would be very useful. I just wish that they would take sone optimum pro mode setting and use them for a variety of night mode scenarios. I can get better shots from pro mode than an auto low light setting. Hopefully Note10 with a good night mode and this 5x zoom will appear. I doubt it though. We never see different cameras on a Note to an S of the same year. It probably won’t happen now. You’re right, it could be tested on a midranger first. The other possibility is that it comes as… Read more »

Bobbingalong
Bobbingalong

Note 10 will have the same hardware as the s10. Same as with note 9 and s9

SAMgalaxyXXX
SAMgalaxyXXX

Definitely a welcomed and needed improvement . 10X optical zoom would be great but I’d be happy with at least 5X. Also, more focus and improvement for the front facing camera indoors especially at night, PLEASE!!!! Samsung is still way behind Google in this area.

Afnaz jaslin
Afnaz jaslin

Wheather this module will get galaxy A9(2018) or other galaxy devices?