Apple granted a patent which could help get rid of iPhone’s embarrassing camera bulge

By , Jan 26, 2016

Apple patent spherical camera drawing 002

Apple has just been granted a very cool patent that promises to solve the protruding camera lens on the back of the iPhone 6/6s series. The invention basically calls for packing a spherical photosensor and lens array in a tiny package.

The patent No. 9,244,253 for a “Small form factor high-resolution camera,” which was published Tuesday by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), reduces the distance between the CMOS sensor and the lens by making the sensor curved, a technique used in astronomical telescopes and instrumentation.

Effective focal length of the lens system is within about 20 percent of the radius of curvature of the photosensor. The camera is diffraction-limited with small spot size, allowing small pixels to be used in the photosensor.

“An image is formed by the lens system at a spherically curved image plane that substantially matches the concave surface of the photosensor,” writes Apple.

Apple patent spherical camera drawing 001

It’s important to note that Apple proposes using an additional lens positioned between the second lens element and the photosensor in order to cancel out chromatic aberration which occurs when a spherically curved lens fails to focus all colors to the same convergence point.

Total axial length of the camera outlined by Apple’s patents promises to be a mere 2.0 mm or even less. Despite being implemented in a very small package size, the camera can capture sharp, high-resolution images, making it suitable for use in small devices.

The patent was first filed for in 2013 and credits Apple engineers Xi Chen, David Gere and Matthew Waldon as its inventors.

Source: USPTO

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  • Merman123

    Embarrassing ? lol

    • Cristian B

      Exactly what I thought

    • iPhoneWINS


  • igorsky

    Yeah I’m so embarrassed by it that I never take my phone out. And neither do the other 240 million people who bought it.

    What is going on with this site today? One stupid post after another.

  • Joonyaboy

    Everyone is complaining that Apple keeps making phones thinner but then complains when a useful camera is a few millimeters out. Strange world

    • iPhoneWINS

      thinner is boring now…

    • mrgerbik

      Well if it were a little thicker, the camera woudlnt protrude now would it?

      Anyways, it’s people like you who tend to bunch people together as thou every single person who complained about the iphone being too thin also had grievances towards a protruding camera.

      • Joonyaboy

        It’s just an observance that no matter what Apple does, there will be complaints. So it’s in their best interest to do what sells, rather than what the vocal minority on a blog want.

  • Matthew Amedeo

    I don’t understand how when the iphone has a little protruding lens everyone freaks out about how its a failure, its ugly etc, etc. I’ve never seen an android device that didn’t have a huge lens sticking out on the back. The iphone’s lens is much less obvious and it takes better pictures, Never once has it bothered me one bit….

    • Simos805

      It’s because apple always making products with fine design without any compromises other companies did.

      • iPhoneWINS


    • iPhoneWINS


    • That’s one decision that Jobs would’ve never taken. Glad Cook went against Apples core philosophy and decided to place results ahead of design.

  • nyangejr

    You, all you up there ☝️ leave the guy alone

  • iPhoneWINS

    bring as hell.. who cares about a 1 nanometer camera bulge? the best camera lenses on each are damn need 2 feet long

  • KewlDewd

    I got a brand new iPhone and I was so proud of it. Then I took it to school and all the other kids made fun of me for the camera lens bulge. I was so embarrassed. I just sat in the corner and cried.

    • Hahaha. Exactly my thoughts.

  • Lt_R

    Looking at these comments I’m starting to think that this site needs a focus group before posts (or their wording) go public.

  • John Smith

    I’ve been conducting my own extensive research too, and have also patented it. It’s called “make the damn phone thicker you dimwit”

  • George Edwards

    Might stick out from the phone but not from my case.