Apr 18 AT 9:51 AM Alex Wagner 4 Comments

HTC smartphone with optical zoom lens is ‘not too far off,’ says exec


HTC has placed a major focus on camera tech with its past two flagship smartphones. The original HTC One (M7) brought with it an UltraPixel camera that placed an importance on low-light performance rather than a high megapixel count. Then the One (M8) came along packing a Duo Camera setup, which features an UltraPixel shooter as well as a secondary camera that allows the user to blur either the background or foreground of a photo. Now an HTC executive has given us a hint as to what HTC’s next major camera feature will be.

Symon Whitehorn, HTC’s imaging expert, has revealed to Vodafone U.K. that his company will release a smartphone with an optical zoom lens in the near future. “Optical zooming in a smartphone is not too far off at all for HTC,” Whitehorn teased. “I can’t give too much away, but within 12-18 months we’ll see huge advances in phone optics.”

Several manufacturers have been focusing on camera tech with their recent flagship smartphones. Samsung has a 16-megapixel shooter in its Galaxy S5, Sony’s Xperia Z2 has a 20-megapixel sensor and the Nokia Lumia 1020’s packing a 41-megapixel PureView cam. Smartphones are increasingly becoming the “one gadget to rule them all” for many folks, and consumers are demanding quality cameras in their handsets so they can ditch their dedicated shooter.

An optical zoom lens will help make smartphone cameras even better than they already are. We’ve already seen some handsets come to market with an optical zoom lens, but the rest of their spec sheets have been fairly lackluster, which didn’t help them to really catch on. It’ll be interesting to see what kind of hardware companies like Samsung and HTC will crank out when they begin putting optical zoom lenses on their flagship phones.

How important do you feel a smartphone’s camera performance is?

Via: Engadget

Source: Vodafone U.K.

Editorial Director of News and Content for PhoneDog Media. Arsenal, beer, video games. Can be followed on Twitter at @alw.

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  • Juan

    If they can do it without the bulk of a pocket sized point and shoot that would be great! The one major problem I have with my HTC One M7 is the zoom. With the “Ultrapixel” thing the zoomed images are just unacceptable and grainey.

    They will need to make sure the battery is beefy enough to handle the constant zooming everyone will be doing. I don’t zoom in a lot right now (as I explained earlier) but with a dedicated hardware zoom feature, I’ll be using it a lot more.

    I know it will bulk up the phone a bit and I can accept that. I just hope it’s not too much.

  • jamal adam

    That’s quite ambitious but they also need to increase the megapixels in order to provide a better and higher quality picture in the near future.
    I feel that the performance is critical in a smartphone because it is one of the areas that is important in daily life, whether one is taking a pictures of family, friends, events, etc. It provides us with memories that we can share with others around the world and therefore the camera experience and quality of pictures is becoming more and more important as we progress.

  • donger

    HTC is at it again.

  • Eli Gaffke

    I did a whole trip to Chicago using only my GS3. If you know how to use your smartphone camera you can get better shots then some people do with point and shoots. Tap to focus, holding still, adjusting for light angles. But I never use zoom on my phone camera, it’s pointless. But to have optical zoom with OIS would be awesome.