Apple working on 3D camera, according to patent

Apple working on 3D camera, according to patentThe iPhone 5 is god-knows-how-long away so, between now and then, we're sure to see at least a thousand different rumours about it.

And here's today's: it could feature a 3D camera. Like many such bits of iTittleTattle, this one is based on a shred of fact. That fact being a patent - published by the US Patent and Trademark Office - which shows that Cupertino is still working on 3D camera technology.

Apple's patent has lots of mouth watering terms (if you're a geek) that include advanced microlenses, depth-detection, chrominance, and luminance sensors. Perhaps the coolest bit of info is that said camera could 'recognize facial expressions and gestures while creating 3D models of scanned objects.' Apparently.

Here's a snippet:

"Facial gestures may include, but are not limited to, smiling, grimacing, frowning, winking, and so on and so forth. In one embodiment, this may be accomplished by detecting the orientation of various facial muscles using surface geometry data, such as the mouth, eyes, nose, forehead, cheeks, and so on, and correlating the detected orientations with various gestures."

Fascinating stuff really, when you consider that 3D has, thus far, been not so much a damp squib but an extremely wet, smelly one. HTC's Evo 3D was barely marketed (did you even know it was on sale?) and LG's Optimus 3D was kinda cool for the first five mins until you realised that it gave headaches and was only limited to a few key apps (plus, five mins was all you'd get out of a full battery!)

This could be really cool when you consider just how - like them or hate them - Apple does manage to take features that have existed for a while and (in most cases) make them more attractive and user friendly.

We'll not hold our breath for 3D FaceTime - but can't wait to see what comes out of this. If anything at all.

You can read the patent here in full courtesy of PatentlyApple.

Read more about: iOSApple iPhone 5

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6 comments

JanSt / MOD  Apr. 2, 2012 at 20:33

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-IqNVwtj04RE/S-wJoGVo5GI/AAAAAAAAAGg/brZppa7ha0o/s1600/1252118982.jpg

Treab  Apr. 2, 2012 at 20:59

JAN FAMILY SITE..

jebus thats a little risky my little leprechaun...

JanSt / MOD  Apr. 2, 2012 at 21:16

JAN FAMILY SITE..

jebus thats a little risky my little leprechaun...


It's a photo of the word. That is iconography, not swearing.

matt101101 / MOD  Apr. 2, 2012 at 23:06

It's swearing...raises a fair point though so I don't care.

Treab  Apr. 2, 2012 at 23:12

Mods = men on drugs

though it should be wods or lods (in jans case)

jaybear88  Apr. 3, 2012 at 09:24

'recognize facial expressions and gestures while creating 3D models of scanned objects.'

Calm down Jan, by the sounds of this quote the camera isn't for the ever annoying 3d phase that's currently sweeping through but 3d recognition of the user. Basically, Apple is taking an idea coined long ago, built upon by someone else (microsofts kinect is probably a good example, even though they bought it from PrimeSense) and then adding a patent to it and calling it their own. Same old, same old.

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