It seems pretty likely that the new versions of the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max coming later this fall will feature three rear camera lenses. And now some leaked photos purportedly of the iPhone 11's design are giving us an idea of what that triple-camera setup could look like.
The photos, posted to SlashLeaks by way of the Chinese microblogging site Weibo, show a pair of different-sized iPhone models. On the back of the phones, three camera lenses are housed in a slightly raised square section in the upper left corner. The lenses are placed in a triangular array.
BGR, which reported on the images, says that they're case moldings assembled by a case maker based on leaked details from Apple's supply chain. Case makers typically use these types of moldings to get a jump on designing their own accessories so that they can be ready when the new phone is finally launched.
We're seeing these photos just after a report last week from highly regarded Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo forecasting the company would add a 12-megapixel ultrawide lens to its 5.8- and 6.5-inch phones this fall. Kuo's report also mentioned a special dark coating aimed at concealing the iPhone's cameras was in the works.
It would make sense for Apple to adopt a triple lens setup in some of this year's iPhone models. It's a feature that other phone makers including Samsung and Huawei have added to their phones with great effect. But there's been some concern that Apple may not be going with an aesthetically pleasing design based on early renders.
One such render from January showed off a reported iPhone with a rather chunky camera module that featured a triangular array of lenses. Leaked iPhone schematics last month pointed to a similar design.
The good news from these new renders is that lenses are placed a little closer together so that the camera module no longer seems as bulky. The lenses also don't seem to jut out so much in this new render.
If Apple does adopt this approach, it would be a departure from how other phone makers have gone about housing three cameras on the back of their devices. The Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus, for example, put their cameras in a horizontal strip. The Huawei P30 Pro stacks three cameras on top of each other, while adding a time-of-flight sensor off to the side.
The new iPhone renders posted to Weibo also show off the front of the 2019 iPhones, but there's no major change there. Both iPhone models still feature a notch to house the TrueDepth camera that supports features like FaceID and Animoji.