We’re all so used to using our iPhones as our primary cameras these days that it’s difficult to remember what it was like in the dark days before the device came along.
Today the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office published a new series of Apple-related patents, including an historic 2008 filing for an Apple camera. While the patent covers both a standalone camera (something Apple hasn’t done since the QuickTake camera launched in 1994) and a camera integrated into a PDA, it is likely that this is the patent which covers the original iPhone.
Also referenced in the patents are camera lenses built into the body of a portable media device, such as a mobile phone, PDA, audio and/or video player, and/ computer.
The patent covers:
“An electronic device, comprising: a lens within an opening in a body of the electronic device, wherein the lens directs light onto a recording medium within the electronic device; and one or more acoustic ports in the body of the electronic device arranged around the opening for the lens, wherein the one or more acoustic ports form part of the opening for the lens.”
While the original iPhone camera wasn’t up to much — being more or less added because Apple felt it had to include one — the publishing of the patent highlights just how much Cupertino has improved its iOS camera over the years: adding features like autofocus, video recording, flash and other innovations, along with more megapixels and better low-light performance. Much of this relies on the improved processor in subsequent iPhone iterations since the original, which the camera relies on for much of its processing.
Source: Patently Apple
Thanks: Cult of Mac reader, need sleep