Guo Mingchi said that Semco, the best lens supplier in Korea and Sunny Optical, the best lens supplier in China, will enter the Apple lens supply chain in the second half of 2020 and 2021, respectively. Guo Mingchi believes that Semco will provide a large part of the new “periscope telephoto lens” for Apple’s 2022 iPhone.
Currently, mobile phones equipped with periscope camera modules include Huawei P30 Pro and Samsung’s Galaxy S20 Ultra. The former provides 5x optical zoom.
Digital zoom can be farther than optical zoom, but in terms of image quality, digital zoom is obviously inferior to optical zoom. This is because digital zoom uses software to zoom in on certain parts of the image, just like zooming in with photo editing software.
Apple has applied for a patent for the periscope lens as early as 2016. According to the description contained in the patent, light will be guided into the camera through a main lens, bounce off the mirror contained in the smartphone, and then sent to a secondary lens that moves up and down to achieve the purpose of magnification. Apple describes it as a “folding telephoto camera lens system.”
Guo Mingchi also revealed that iPhone 12 will use Semco’s ball-type voice coil motor mechanism to improve the phone’s autofocus function.