It started with early renders of the iPhone 11. Then, early leaks of the Google Pixel 4. Followed by an oddly swift confirmation by Google themselves. Ladies and gentlemen, square cameras are a thing now. With two of the “big three” late release smartphones seemingly embracing the square camera assembly, it’s only a matter of time before other manufacturers incorporate the same design into their phones.
There could be several reasons behind the sudden and sharp departure from the current camera system. In regards to the Google Pixel, it will be a fairly easy way to migrate into the multiple lens layout so popular on modern flagship phones. There’s also the possibility that they could be adding another sensor called a “Spectral Sensor.” The purpose of a spectral sensor is to essentially allow your camera real-time analysis of colors, for near perfect replication. In short, the best smartphone camera is about to get even better. Google could also be getting ready to bolster video quality produced by their cameras, as that was one of the lone dark spots in an otherwise excellent phone.
As for the iPhone, part of me feels like there’s really no reason to change the camera assembly outside of for the sake of saying they did. The iPhone can easily be classified as one of the best and most consistent camera experiences on a smartphone today. Photos usually always turn out great, and when it comes to video quality, there is literally no competition for iPhone. I could see Apple adding a Spectral Sensor into new iPhones too though, and in the process reclaiming the top overall camera experience on any OS.
Either way, this new design is for sure headed to the next Pixel and potentially headed to new iPhones. We can be sure mobile photography is about to take a giant leap forward, and that is a win for everybody involved.