Apple files for patent for camera systems for a ‘foldable’ iPhone

Apple has filed for a patent (number 20220006964) for “camera systems for bendable electronic devices” that seems to refer to a “foldable” iPhone.

Personally, I doubt we’ll ever see such a device, but the tech giant has filed multiple patents that hint at a bendable gadget.

About the patent filing

In the patent filing, Apple notes that electronic devices may have image sensors. For example, a rear-facing camera on a cellular telephone may be used to capture images of a scene. To capture wide angle photographs, some cellular telephones support panoramic image capture modes.

In this mode of operation, a user sweeps the camera of a cellular telephone across a scene during image capture operations. After multiple sequential images of different parts of the scene have been captured in this way, the cellular telephone may stitch together the images to form a panoramic photograph. 

Apple says “it can be challenging to capture panoramic images in this way. Images may become blurred due to camera movement and/or portions of a scene may move during image capture operations.” Alignment issues may also arise causing desired portions of an image to be cut off unintentionally. Apparently, Apple thinks that “camera systems for bendable electronic devices” is one answer to such issues.

Summary of the patent filing

Here’s Apple’s abstract of the patent filing: “An electronic device may have a flexible housing formed from flexible fabric, flexible polymer, or other flexible materials. Cameras may be mounted on the housing. The housing may be bent into different configurations such as a configuration in which the housing has a convex surface facing an exterior region and a configuration in which the housing has a concave surface facing the exterior region. The cameras may have respective camera image capture directions. By reorienting the cameras by bending the housing, the cameras can be used to capture panoramic images or three-dimensional images.”

Dennis Sellers
the authorDennis Sellers
Dennis Sellers is the editor/publisher of Apple World Today. He’s been an “Apple journalist” since 1995 (starting with the first big Apple news site, MacCentral). He loves to read, run, play sports, and watch movies.