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3.2-megapixel camera confirmed for next-gen iPhone?

updated 09:30 am EDT, Fri April 3, 2009

3.2MP camera for iPhone

The next iPhone should indeed have a 3.2-megapixel camera, according to a Taiwanese industry report. Market sources claim that OmniVision has received orders from Apple for 3.2-megapixel CMOS sensors, with the specific intent of use in a new iPhone line. Aptina and STMicroelectronics are also said to have been in competition to produce the sensors.

OmniVision is additionally noted to have secured a deal to produce five-megapixel sensors for Apple, though for what device is unclear; the end product is expected to launch later in 2009. Apple may theoretically use the sensors in a new iPhone or iPod, but the company is also said to be working on devices such as a 10-inch netbook, which could also take advantage of a camera. The technology could likewise be interwoven with Macs and Cinema Displays.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Zanziboy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Yay! Better photos..

    The iPhone will never replace my camera, but it would be nice to have improved resolution. I hope the new sensor has better light performance. I can't wait to see Omnivision's 5-megapixel sensor in an Apple mobile since it supports 1080p video and comes in 1/3" form factor for better image quality.

  1. Constable Odo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Let the bitchin' begin

    What? Only 3.2MPs when my (any handset) has 5 or 8 MPs. It's an improvement and that will have to be satisfactory enough. A cellphone isn't going to take the place of a dedicated camera without extra bulk. Apple is making a sensible trade-off.

    I guess there's only going to be one camera on board and no video-conferencing. The high-end Nokia fans will be laughing hard about the iPhone still being behind the times.

  1. sgirard

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Please have autofocus so that the iPhone can be used as a bar code scanner. Autofocus would open up all kinds of opportunities for application developers.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    but you can't say something is 'confirmed' and stick a question mark at the end of the headline. It either is or isn't.

    And the 'sources' say both 3.2 and 5 mp. So what's the 5 for, if not the iphone?

  1. gambit-7

    Joined: Dec 1969



    .... or for Apple's tablet.


  1. sicembears

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Something better than a 3 MP cam. That is sad.

  1. ZinkDifferent

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Apple products with video

    That's right, because the iPhone is the only product Apple makes with a video sensor (coughMacBooks, iSights, Cinema Displayscough).

    On a speculative level, a higher-resolution camera would fit well in a 30" Cinema Display, or a new iSight pod.

  1. shawnde

    Joined: Dec 1969



    @Zanziboy and @sicembears

    Megapixels and Image Quality are inversely proportional, assuming the size of the sensor stays the same. Therefore, given the size of the iPhone camera and sensor (really tiny), they would be better off going to 1.2 Megapixel, and actually achieving better images than to 3.2.

    Remember, megapixels don't make good images; large sensors and large lenses do.

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