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Home / News / Apple and HTC in race to put light field cameras in your smartphone

Apple and HTC in race to put light field cameras in your smartphone

The infinite depth photos of light field cameras could soon be in your pocket – but will iPhone or Android get them first?

Light field cameras – which let you adjust the focus of photos after they’ve been taken – could soon be adapted to appear in HTC smartphones.

According to DigiTimes, Taiwan’s Industrial Technology Research Institute has set up an R&D team working on light field camera tech – and HTC has been in touch to find out if it’s possible to fit light field cameras into smartphones.

Apple is also investigating light field camera technology – Steve Jobs was in contact with light field camera manufacturer Lytro, according to Adam Lashinsky’s book Inside Apple. No doubt seeing Steve go for it has led to HTC’s recent enquiries into the technology.

But there’s a way to go before Lytro tech finds its way into your pocket – it takes a lot of PC power to process light field images, which smartphones, apparently, aren’t yet capable of.

Still, there’s reason to be optimistic – cloud processing can already render powerful PC games on your mobile, so why not allow live rendering of your light field snaps too? Maybe Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner was right, and we’ll soon be enhancing all our photos on the fly.

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Profile image of Dan Grabham Dan Grabham Editor-in-Chief


Dan is Editor-in-chief of Stuff, working across the magazine and the Stuff.tv website.  Our Editor-in-Chief is a regular at tech shows such as CES in Las Vegas, IFA in Berlin and Mobile World Congress in Barcelona as well as at other launches and events. He has been a CES Innovation Awards judge. Dan is completely platform agnostic and very at home using and writing about Windows, macOS, Android and iOS/iPadOS plus lots and lots of gadgets including audio and smart home gear, laptops and smartphones. He's also been interviewed and quoted in a wide variety of places including The Sun, BBC World Service, BBC News Online, BBC Radio 5Live, BBC Radio 4, Sky News Radio and BBC Local Radio.

Areas of expertise

Computing, mobile, audio, smart home

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