When in doubt, just slap on an extra camera. That seems to be the sentiment from smartphone manufacturers nowadays, as the standard dual camera system is already being bypassed for a triple camera system. Huawei was the first company to do so with the P20 Pro, and if a new report is true, Apple will follow suit next year.
According to Taiwan site Economic Daily News, Apple is reportedly working on introducing a 12MP triple camera system in an iPhone model in 2019. The report states the new extra camera will be a 6MP lens with a 5x zoom but doesn’t reveal if it’ll be digital, optical or a hybrid zoom system.
Right now, the iPhone X and iPhone 8 Plus have 2x optical zoom and 10x digital zoom while the iPhone 8 has 5x digital zoom. Given the current specifications, the only reason to add another camera is to improve the optical zooming capabilities, but that’s still unclear.
In adding the third lens, Apple would jump on the most recent camera trend. Huawei jump started it with the P20 Pro and its triple camera system consisting of main 40MP shooter with f/1.8, 20MP monochrome lens with f/1.6 and an 8MP telephoto lens with f/2.4 and 3x optical zoom. That’s the only phone we have as example for what Apple’s triple camera system could possibly look like.
Given this supposed iPhone is more than a year away, we’d take the report with a giant grain of salt. Smartphone development fluctuates a lot, and if Google’s superb work with the Pixel 2 (and its single lens) camera is any indication, proper software updates can offset the need for extra cameras.