One new patent The app suggests that Samsung is working on moving its stabilization from the lens of its cameras to the sensor. Switching from current optical image stabilization to sensor stabilization can improve image quality and reduce blur. both the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra and Apple iPhone 14Pro use image stabilization in the cameras, but the iPhone stabilizes the sensor while the Galaxy phone stabilizes the lens.
We originally saw this as a rumor in 2021, while the Samsung Galaxy S22 was getting its first hints and leaks. at that time we reported that Samsung was testing this feature, and could also be part of a partnership with camera maker Olympus. This partnership never materialized, but now we are seeing possible fruits of the work.
A stabilizer on the sensor means a bigger bump
Apple was the first smartphone maker to use sensor stabilization, a technique closer to the way some high-end professional DSLR cameras like the Canon EOS R6, stabilize an image on the camera body and not just on the lens. Of course, on a smartphone the distance between the sensor and the lens is much smaller, but Apple believes that stabilizing the sensor produces a better photo.
This also means a bigger camera bump. Image stabilization relies on tiny motors that actually move the lens or sensor in response to an accelerometer – otherwise known as a gyroscope. It can be incredibly responsive, but it also takes up more space.
Adding the hardware closer to the sensor adds even more thickness, and you can see the dramatic camera bump difference between the iPhone 11Prothat did not use sensor stabilization, and the iPhone 12Proin which Apple debuted the feature.
Rumors suggest that this patent may apply specifically to the telephoto lens, but the actual patent does not mention this. Samsung already enhances its telephoto lens with digital tricks that produce incredible results, even at a jaw-dropping 100x zoom. Better stabilization would certainly equate to even greater improvements here.
Review: Probably not for the Galaxy S23 Ultra
As we said, this type of stabilization results in a bigger bump for the camera. We’ve seen leaked footage of the rumors Galaxy S23 Ultra phone, and appears to have the same camera array design as the Galaxy S22 Ultra. This phone has five lenses on the back, but no protrusion.
It’s entirely possible that Samsung is hiding all the stabilization inside the phone. Samsung already hides an entire stylus inside the Galaxy S22 Ultra, and the phone is still waterproof sealed. with your Galaxy Z Flip 4 and folding family, has already proven contortionist skills when it comes to fixing phone casings.
Patents are a good way to check the direction of the industry, but a bad way to predict a specific product feature. We expect to see the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S phone constantly improve on the photos its predecessor took, if that’s possible. Eventually, a stabilized image sensor could be a way for Samsung to make that happen.