Are Multiple-Lens Smartphone Cameras Necessary?

The MWC 2019 shows us a new emerging trend among high-end smartphone models with multiple-lens cameras on the back. Device manufacturers are under constant pressure to deliver new functionality and groundbreaking features to consumers. Back then, mobile phones were just wireless phones with no camera. Eventually, phone camera had very low resolution and produced grainy pictures even with ample natural lighting. Today, things are obviously much better. In latest models, manufacturers don’t only put one or two lenses on the back, but they have three, four and even five lenses. The new Nokia PureView 9 boasts five-lens rear-facing camera and also a front-facing camera. Other phone models have three and four lenses on the back. This could be a way to mislead people that devices with one or two lenses are outdated, which are due for replacement.

The bottom line is, the competition in the smartphone industry is already very intense and manufacturers are getting carried away. The pace of the “innovation” is spinning out of control. Unfortunately, with the rapid introduction of new features, average users could care less and they may become increasingly immune. The real question is whether you need multiple-lens camera on your phone. You may need it if you consider these features important:

  • Wide angle capture: With multiple lenses on the back, smartphones could capture wide angle photos better. It’s great for taking group photos or photos of scenery. You can include more objects into a single photo.
  • Enhanced image detail: Adding second, third or more lenses could enhance the overall image quality. These lenses capture the same objects at all the available colors in full resolution. Images from each lens would be processed and used into making a single image with much better image detail.
  • AR applications: Extra lenses can be used to measure depths and this is essential for augmented reality (AR) applications. AR can be used in mapping apps, games and a whole range of mobile functionality.