Apple R&D center in France will give iPhone camera a boost

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iPhone 7 mockup
The iPhone 7's dual-lens camera could be a game changer.
Photo: Martin Hajek

France will soon host a new Apple research center, according to local reports that claim the iPhone maker plans to lease a new R&D facility in Grenoble.

Apple’s new research lab will focus on imaging sensors and techniques to improve them, reports the French newspaper Le Dauphiné Libéré, which says Apple engineers have been secretly working out of Minatec, a European research center focused on micro-nano technologies in Grenoble for over a year now.

The team of more than a dozen researchers and engineers is set to establish its own laboratory in Grenoble after Apple recently signed a lease on an 800-square-meter facility.

Approximately 30 engineers will work out of the new location in collaboration with Apple’s supply partner STMicroelectronics. They will focus largely on image sensors for the iPhone and iPad.

The imaging capabilities of the iPhone have become an increasingly important feature for Apple over the past few years after the device became the most popular camera on the planet. This year Apple is expected to introduce a dual-lens camera system on the iPhone 7 Plus, bringing Apple’s device one step closer to DSLR quality.