How the iPhone 14’s front camera gaining autofocus might boost your selfie game

All iPhone 14 models should bring autofocus to the front-facing selfie camera for clearer images, enhanced focus during FaceTime video calls and other perks.

A scene from Apple's showing Selena Gomez posing for a selfie with her iPhone 6s camera with a bunch of reporters in the background photographing her
Image credit: Apple
  • The iPhone 14 may ditch a fixed-focus selfie camera for one with autofocus
  • Its front camera should also use a wider aperture to let more light in
  • You’ll get better Portrait mode, video calls and night shots
  • …But first, let me take a selfie!

The iPhone 14’s front camera should finally use autofocus

Certain premium Android handsets, such as some Samsung’s models in the company’s Galaxy series, have autofocus on the front camera. In comparison, the iPhone’s front-facing camera has always been fixed-focus, but that could change with the iPhone 14 models coming in the fall. Writing on his Twitter, revered Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says he’s now expecting improvements not just to the rear-facing cameras on the iPhone 14 models but also to the selfie camera out the front.

“The front camera of four new iPhone 14 models would likely upgrade to autofocus and about f/1.9 aperture,” he said. That would compare to the front camera on the iPhone 13 models which features a narrower aperture of f/2.2 and has its focus fixed. The analyst explains that giving the camera a wider aperture allows more light to hit the sensor. And with more light hitting the sensor, you get less noise (especially in low-light situations) and clearer images overall. Read: The best iPhone camera tips

The addition of autofocus would be a first for the iPhone’s front camera, which has so far been fixed focus and came with all the compromises that fixed-focus cameras face: Blurry or out-of-focus shots and the inability to tap in the Camera app to set the focus, to name but a few. Autofocus, coupled with the wider aperture, could result in improvements such as a nicer shallow depth-of-field effect when taking selfies or using the Portrait mode. “In addition,” Kuo adds, “autofocus can also enhance the focus effect for video calls and live streaming” in apps such as FaceTime, Zoom and others. Read: 5 iPhone camera tips for taking great photos

Apple is expected to release four new iPhones this year, two with 6.1-inch screens and two with 6.7-inch ones. The iPhone mini won’t be part of this year’s lineup due to poor sales of the first two models. Kuo is the first Apple analyst to call for a major camera upgrade on the next iPhone. In April of 2021, he predicted that the rear shooter of the iPhone 14 Pro models would be jumping from twelve to 48 megapixels and gaining the ability to record video in 8K resolution (up from 4K currently).