Apple has reportedly found a new supplier of telephoto lens components for a periscope camera system that could feature in 2023 iPhones. The Cupertino-based company will be procuring the lens parts from South Korea’s Jahwa Electronics, according to a report by The Elec.
The South Korean firm Jahwa Electronics announced on Wednesday that it plans to spend 191 billion won ($155 million) on building facilities for manufacturing new optical image stabilization (OIS) actuators. The company also supplies these actuators to Samsung for its Galaxy S22 series smartphones.
Interestingly, Apple had allegedly removed Samsung from its supply chain for telephoto lenses as the latter’s patents were getting in the way of including the tech in 2023 iPhones. The Cupertino-based company appears to have bypassed Samsung by striking a deal with Jahwa Electronics. Both Samsung Electro-Mechanics and Jahwa Electronics own patents related to actuators used in telephoto lenses which will eventually be used in a periscope camera setup.
The company’s facility expansion plans will mean that it is building a plant exclusively for the iPhone maker. It is reported that Apple will take nearly a year before it approves production. The publication’s sources claim that Jahwa will commence production in the second quarter of 2023.
A periscope camera system consists of a sensor that is placed perpendicular to the phone’s back instead of in parallel. Additionally, it includes a mirror that reflects the light to the camera sensor. Multiple lenses are stacked vertically in planes parallel to the sensor. An image is formed when the light rays pass through the lenses and are projected onto the sensor.
In short, it allows the lenses to be folded into a form factor that works well for smartphones. This setup helps you capture sharp photos with a high degree of optical zoom. Android manufacturers such as Samsung, Huawei, and Oppo have been using periscope zoom lenses for quite a while.
Rumors hinting that the iPhone would feature a periscope camera have been circulating since 2020. Noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes that the upcoming 2023 iPhones will sport the lens. The iPhone maker has already patented its periscope camera system.
Update: LG Innotek Could Also Be a Potential Periscope Lens Supplier for Apple
A new report by The Elec adds that LG Innotek could be in the running as a potential supplier for Apple’s periscope telephoto lens. Jahwa Electonics will likely supply the OIS actuators manufactured in its new facility to LG Innotek, which will replace previous suppliers Alps Alpine and Mizumi[Via The Elec]