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Apple launches iPhone 12 with LiDAR and 5G capabilities

15 Oct 2020

A14 Bionic design features “pro camera system”, LiDAR scanner and largest yet Super Retina XDR display.

Apple has this week announced its iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max, offering a range of improved optical features including a so-called “pro camera system” and a LiDAR scanner.

The Pro Max model features what Apple calls “the largest Super Retina XDR display, the largest ever on iPhone, protected by the all-new Ceramic Shield front cover, which provides the biggest jump in durability on iPhone.”

The Apple-designed A14 Bionic chip, claimed to be the fastest chip in a smart phone, supports computational photography features including the new Apple ProRAW™ package for more creative control in photos, and enables the first end-to-end Dolby Vision video experience, at up to 60 frames per second.

The camera systems include an ultra wide camera, a telephoto camera with an even longer focal length on the iPhone 12 Pro Max model, and new wide cameras to capture professional-quality images and video in bright and low-light environments, says the launch release from Apple.

LiDAR scanner

The iPhone 12 Pro models also introduce a new LiDAR scanner, said to enable “immersive augmented reality experiences” and the MagSafe™ feature, which offers high-powered wireless charging.

The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max will be available in four stainless steel finishes, including graphite, silver, gold, and pacific blue. Pre-orders for iPhone 12 Pro begin this Friday, October 16th, with availability beginning Friday, October 23rd. iPhone 12 Pro Max will be available for pre-order Friday, November 6, and in stores beginning Friday, November 13.

“This is a huge leap for iPhone, bringing the best 5G experience in the market and delivering our most advanced technologies to users who want the absolute most from their iPhone," said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing.

“Each generation of iPhone has changed what we expect from a smart phone, and now with 5G, iPhone 12 Pro provides a new generation of performance. Our integration of hardware and software enables incredible computational photography features like the expansion of night mode to more cameras, and introduces support for HDR video with Dolby Vision.

Realistic AR experience

Of the new LiDAR scanner, Joswiak said it is “a state-of-the-art LiDAR Scanner, which means users can experience AR like never before. It also offers benefits to the camera with faster autofocus in low light and the introduction of night mode portraits. These experiences and so much more make this the best iPhone lineup ever.”

The new LiDAR Scanner offers the ability to measure light distance and use pixel depth information of a scene. This technology delivers faster, more realistic AR experiences and improves autofocus by a factor of six in low-light scenes for more accuracy and reduced capture time in photos and videos. This hardware, combined with the power of the Neural Engine of A14 Bionic, also unlocks night mode portraits, rendering a beautiful low-light bokeh effect.

Lasermet LtdHÜBNER PhotonicsLumencor, Inc.Photon Engineering, LLCPhotonics NorthKentek CorporationAUREA TECHNOLOGY
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