Oppo has officially confirmed recent rumors about its new prototype smartphone camera, which is capable of a record-breaking 10x hybrid zoom.
A demonstration of Oppo's previous 5x hybrid zoom lens. Credit: OppoA previous teaser issued by the company hinted at a reveal of a powerful zoom-lensed camera at an event in Beijing on Jan 16. Everyone’s suspicions were proved to be correct by the full announcement, as Oppo showed off a camera capable of 10x zoom, with a demonstration promised at Mobile World Congress 2019.
It’s managed this through using an optical zoom camera, plus further digital trickery from a standard camera and a wide-angle camera, creating an equivalent of 15.9mm to 159mm apertures.
Obviously this kind of technology is something Oppo has been focusing on in recent years. A few years ago it showed off a 5x zoom camera at MWC 2017, which included a periscoping 3x zoom lens, which may well be the one used in the new design.
This is still very much in development though. The camera may be functional enough to talk about and show off, but we don’t even know if it’s attached to a phone yet.
And while Oppo claims that the technology is almost ready for the public, that may not even happen. After all. the previous 5x model disappeared after its MWC debut, never to be seen in an actual phones. Maybe it’s best not to raise your hopes too high yet.
Oppo is due to arrive in the UK on Jan. 29 this year, and will sell a version of its R17 handset as its first model (although it’s being renamed the RX17 for some reason).
Sadly, the dual camera on the high-end R17 Pro does not feature optical zoom, but its sibling, the Find X, does, in the form of 2x optical zoom on its unique pop-up camera.
It's also important to remember that Oppo is owned by the folks behind OnePlus, a company that could end up benefitting from this camera phone tech as well.