Honor is working on Apple’s TetraPrism alike periscope camera

The smartphone camera wars are heating up, and Honor is reportedly packing some serious zoom firepower into their next flagship device.

According to a patent shared by AnTuTu, Honor is working on a new periscope telephoto lens technology. This might equipped with the upcoming Honor Magic 7 Pro will debut an all-new periscope telephoto lens design that blows past the competition.

Use of periscope telephoto lens in smartphones

For the uninitiated, periscope lenses are what allow modern smartphones to achieve impressive long-range optical zoom despite their ultra-thin bodies. By folding the optics laterally, they can effectively simulate the longer focal lengths normally requiring a protruding lens barrel.

Most current periscope implementations, like those found in Samsung’s Galaxy S-series or Apple’s iPhones, rely on a series of mirrors to bend the light path.

Current era of periscope telephoto technology in smartphones

Samsung , one of the major Android flagships uses single mirror periscope that bend light at 90 degree angle before hitting the sensor. With this technology, Samsung was able to achieve 10x optical zoom. Samsung still use this technology in their Galaxy S24 Ultra.

Samsung periscope telephoto lens technology
Source: Counterpoint Research

But the problem with this setup is the use of smaller sensor. As the sensor is set at 90 degree in respect to the phones body, OEM need to put small sensor to reduce the size of the camera bump.

Periscope technology used by Samsung

To solve this issue, Apple implemented a slightly improved version in their iPhone 15 Pro Max. They used a prism like glass piece with reflective surface inside it.

When the lights enter from one way, it hits the first mirror. The mirror guide the light through the prism until it hits the second mirror. The second mirror reflect light downward to the sensor.

Periscope technology used by Apple in iPhone 15 Pro Max

The image sensor faces upword unlike the sidewise facing sensor used by Samsung. This helps minimize camera bump while not limiting the sensor size that much.

Honor’s new periscope telephoto lens technology

Honor is working on a very similar periscope design. Unlike Apple, Honor will place the image sensor facing downward.

Rumored periscope technology to be implemented by honor

This is the same as Apple’s but parallel. It’s still unclear weather it will either improve the optical performance or give longer focal length.

If everythings goes well, Honor will have pulled off a serious hardware feat – all while keeping their signature curved design language and stylish color options intact. The Magic 7 Pro is shaping up to be the zoom king, at least for a while.

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