Apple’s next-gen iPhone to feature rear-facing 3D laser for augmented reality and autofocus

“A source with knowledge of the situation tells Fast Company Apple is working hard to add a rear-facing 3D laser system to the back of one of the new iPhones to be announced this fall,” Mark Sullivan reports for Fast Company. “The new sensor system will enable better depth detection for augmented reality apps, and a more accurate type of autofocus for photography, the source tells me.”

“The source said the VSCEL laser system is probably intended for the 10th anniversary iPhone (which may be called the iPhone 8 or the iPhone Pro or, hopefully, the iPhone X),” Sullivan reports. “Whether the sensor will be included in that phone, or a 2018 iPhone, depends on the progress the Apple engineers make in integrating the laser system into the phone, our source says.”

“KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo (who is usually accurate on iPhone plans) believes the iPhone 8 front-facing camera will use a laser for 3D selfie effects and to recognize the user’s face for authentication purposes,” Sullivan reports. “This may be true, but the rear of the phone is where the real action is for 3D lasers. The lasers are a huge part of Apple’s AR story. Right now, ARKit apps rely only on the single iPhone camera to picture and measure the real world into which digital content is placed. While the resulting experience is already surprisingly good, the addition of a 3D laser system on the back of the phone would dramatically improve the depth measurement part, and would make the AR even more lifelike.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Hopefully, we’ll get it sooner than later! We want our iPhone8/X/Pro/Edition units to be packed to the gills with cutting-edge tech!

SEE ALSO:
Apple in a ‘panic’ as next-gen flagship iPhone’s software problems persist, source says – July 12, 2017
John Gruber: Apple’s wireless charging accessory won’t be ready at iPhone launch this year – July 8, 2017
Apple supplier confirms new iPhone models will be ‘waterproof’ with wireless charging – June 14, 2017
iPhone 8 renders from highly detailed CAD file point to glass back, embedded Home button, wireless charging – May 16, 2017
Apple’s next-gen iPhone to pack revolutionary wireless over-the-air charging at a distance? – May 11, 2017
Apple patent application focuses on truly wireless charging via Wi-Fi – April 27, 2017
Apple has at least five different groups working on wireless charging technology – February 23, 2017
Apple joins Wireless Power Consortium – February 13, 2017
Apple’s ‘iPhone X’ to feature wireless charging and iris scanning technology, sources say – February 10, 2017
KGI’s Ming Chi Kuo predicts wireless charging for all three new iPhones – February 9, 2017
More evidence suggests Apple tie-up with true wireless charging firm Energous – December 21, 2016
Apple supplier Dialog partners with wireless charging company Energous – December 15, 2016
Ming-Chi Kuo: Apple’s next-gen iPhone to feature all-glass case for wireless charging – November 23, 2016

11 Comments

  1. As the old saying goes, “Look into the laser with your remaining, good eye!”

    This seems more like someone stringing together a bunch of buzz words that are often attention catching (“3D”, “laser”, “augmented reality”, and “autofocus”) to get people’s attention. This may have absolutely zero basis in reality.

    1. Hit submit too soon.

      Things are getting bloody stupid now. Seems these “sources” are making up more crazy things every day.

      How long before a “credible source” says the iphone 8 will be made of Adamantium, transform into an Apple driverless car and get 20,000 miles from a single gram of Plutonium.

      1. I was surprised by this scientific blunder in Star Wars. But I see similar blunders in modern movies, as well.

  2. I saw an app that tells the bike shop how much to turn the bike shoe cleats. So silly.

    I want a AR app that can tell me when to cut my toe nails.

    At this rate, humanity will need a medical app to tell it when to pee.

  3. Rumor vapor…
    But if these plans are true, this is Apple getting serious about iOS devices perceiving our 3D world. Excellent.

    And yet I somehow doubt this is going to show up in 2017. See you in another year, Apple.

    1. Oh and yeah. There’s that pesky problem of laser light being so bright that it blinds or burns out the human retina. Gotta be careful about that. For the short range required for Apple’s purposes, I suspect low power lasers will be adequate.

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