A new device could be the first to achieve the ‘Holy Grail’ of smartphone designs, leaving Apple’s iPhone and Samsung’s Galaxy ranges lagging behind.
Earlier this June, the Chinese OLED manufacturer, Visionox claimed to be the first to put under-screen camera technology into mass production, freeing the selfie camera from unsightly notches or punch holes. Now, ZTE, also from China, has announced on Weibo that it will be first to put such a camera in a smartphone you can actually buy.
Little is known about the yet-to-be-released handset, but according to respected industry insider @UniverseIce, the new smartphone is called the ZTE A20 5G.
Of course, being first to use such a technology is no guarantee that it will be any good. Although the technology will undoubtedly improve over time, placing a camera under the display currently involves compromises in terms of both camera and display quality. For example, a prototype demonstrated last year by OPPO still suffered from significantly reduced light input to the camera as well as a visible change in display quality in the small area over the lens.
Samsung and Huawei, among others, are also reported to be developing under-screen cameras, but none seem keen to rush products to market, with announcements not expected until 2021.
Regardless of the performance of ZTE’s new device, the first major release to feature a good under-screen camera will have a significant impact on smartphone design for years to come and the A20 5G will give the company a valuable head start against the competition.
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