iPhone 4S (white, front and back, camera)

Don’t you wish you could avoid the usual routine after taking photos with your iPhone: sifting through shots to eliminate the ones where your thumb is perfectly exposed – but your special someone is blurred beyond recognition. Your worries may be over, as a new patent reveals Apple wants to make you a better camera phone photographer. The camera Apple outlined in the filing is designed to continuously capture and store images in a buffer until you release the shutter.

Your mobile device takes from there to automatically scan the buffer, rate the pictures just taken using a number of parameters and present you with the best image…

Apple’s patent for an “Image Capturing Device Having Continuous Image Capture”, filed with the USPTO in October 2012, compensates for a smartphone’s lack of high-quality optics and powerful image sensors found in digital cameras, according to AppleInsider.

To prevent the usual delay digital photographers experience when the camera switches from preview mode to the full image, the iPhone just presents the preview image.

That image is often pixelated and blurry.

To avoid this, Apple’s patent buffers the images take, quickly scores them, and then presents one full-resolution image meeting the specifications.

Apple patent (continuous camera shutter)

From Apple’s filing:

These image capturing devices typically use a preview resolution for capturing a preview image of a scene. Subsequently, a user provides an input to take a photograph. The device switches from preview resolution to full resolution prior to capturing an image.

Switching from preview to full resolution causes a time lag, which may lead to user frustration. Also, camera shake during the time when a user presses a button or touches a touchscreen can degrade image quality.

Hopefully, this new technology will make its way into the iPad, which lags behind the iPhone in quality photo capability.

As for the iPhone, in the right hands, the smartphone can become the favorite device for photos. In a 2011, interview, famed celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz singled out the iPhone 4S as the modern snapshot camera.

  • its damn near impossible to get a clear shot of my 18 month old with the iphone, he moves too quick. I’ve resorted to using my point and shoot and downloading the pics i want to my phone. Hope this makes its way quickly.

  • Falk M.

    Not a fan of this.

  • lets hop it has an on off switch…lol.

  • Tr1pTr0p

    Again this patent trolling bullshit! Technology similar to this is already implemented in newer HTC smartphones, Samsung’s and other’s devices. Hell, even my 7 year old Sony Ericsson has this tech – Best Pic or something like that… The device would take a number of photos automatically and let you choose the best one.

    This is ridiculous!

    • this does it in a few seconds, not 30-60 seconds

      • Tr1pTr0p

        You obviously have no freaking clue what device I’m talking about, what feature I’m talking about, nor have you ever used it or the device featuring it. Because if you have used it, you wouldn’t post such a retarded statement. Hats off to you sir for being so proud of your ignorance!

    • pawfyd

      Sony Ericsson feature phones <333

      The best thing ever. R.I.P. SE.

      • Tr1pTr0p

        Yeah, those things were really awesome!