Wednesday, May 22, 2024
Smart Phones

Patent application shows how Google’s Pixel phones might challenge iPhone and Galaxy models


Google has filed a patent application with the European Patent Office (via Forbes) titled “System and Apparatus of Under-Display Camera.” The patent reveals a technology that Google could use to make its Pixel handsets more competitive with the iPhone and with Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S series phones. The patent explains how Google plans on making a new under-display front-facing camera that would allow Pixel handsets to go without a hole-punch camera or a notch thus leaving a full glass screen on the front of the phone.
Google had to come up with technology that would allow the screen to let light into the camera while still allowing the glass to function as a display for the device. While under-display cameras have been used on smartphones, Google’s version attempts to improve the quality of the photos and videos taken by the under-display camera by taking two parts of the display and using them to block or distort the light as it passes through the screen. 

Google says that this can be done by placing a layer of light-blocking material with different shapes and patterns between the display and the camera sensors. One layer would be placed under each of the two aforementioned regions. One of the sensors could be for color images while the other could be monochrome. Each of the light blocking patterns would be designed to work with its sensor to improve a particular characteristic of a photo or video. One example would be the sharpness, another could be color fidelity.

The sensors’ output is blended together and along with digital image processing and Machine Learning, a high-quality image is created lessening the negatives of having a camera placed under the display. And since other attempts to improve under-display photography have yet to deliver high-quality images, if Google does pull this off it could be a step ahead of the competition including Apple and Samsung. Just don’t expect to see this on the Pixel 8 line when it is unveiled this October, and the Pixel 9 series next year.



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