Apple to pack iPhone 8 with a rear-facing 3D laser


(Web Desk) - It is rumoured that Apple's upcoming smartphone iPhone 8 might have unique features like 3D laser technology and augmented reality. Nonetheless, given the big push Apple appears intent on making into the Augmented Reality space, it stands to reason that Apple will do everything it can to ensure that the feature is ready to go in time for the iPhone 8 launch. The 3D lasers will reportedly work in union with the iPhone 8 camera and will provide improved depth detection along with improved autofocus functionality when taking photos. Today's report explains that it's up to the "progress Apple engineers make in integrating the laser system into the phone" and that it could come this year or it could come next year.

VCSEL laser systems calculate the distance the light travels from the laser to the target and back to the sensor, and generate a Time of Flight (TOF) measurement.

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While we've already seen how capable ARKit is on existing iPhone models, we can only imagine how much more seamless things will be with a more advanced camera system. A laser and 3D-sensing system could also improve Apple's Portrait Mode implementation. The system consists of the source laser, a lens, a sensor and a processor. Lumentum is purportedly providing most of the VCSEL lasers with Finisar and II-VI as secondary suppliers. The whole thing costs about $2 per phone, our source says.

Contrary to this report, yesterday a publication claimed that Apple will ditch the fingerprint scanner on iPhone 8. Furthermore, design leaks of the iPhone 8 appear to confirm a vertically aligned dual-lens module, suggesting that Apple is indeed going to put emphasis on AR when its new smartphone arrives.

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The source said the VSCEL laser system is probably intended for the 10th anniversary iPhone (which may be called the iPhone 8 or the iPhone Pro or, hopefully, the iPhone X).

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