Future iPhone cameras to feature interchangeable lenses?

A new Apple patent has outed the company's work into interchageable lens smartphone cameras

Taking smartphone cameras to new levels of usability Apple has filed a patent for an iPhone camera with interchangeable lenses

A new, tantalising, Apple patent has been unearthed highlighting the company’s plans to introduce exchangeable camera lenses to future iPhone models.

Seemingly set to take smartphones’ photographic abilities to the next level, Apple’s latest patent highlights means of switching future generation iPhone’s camera lenses and filters at will, offering users a wider range of image capture options.

Making the jump between dedicated digital compact cameras and the high-end interchangeable lens toting DSLRs, the patent marks a step away from Apple’s usual seamless and rigidly structured design principles that prevent owners of the iconically branded gadgets replacing or customising any hardware.

Demonstrating how future handset’s could feature a camera panel than could be removed or rotated to offer varying lens options, Apple has described the patented system as “a portable electronic device [that] includes a digital imaging subsystem with a lens having an optical axis.”

The document, which has been registered with the United States Patent and Trademark office, has detailed how the system will work stating that it will be made up of: “A case encloses and supports the digital imaging subsystem in a first defined positional relationship to the case. A removable panel is coupled to the case and held in a second defined positional relationship to the case that covers the digital imaging subsystem without the removable panel being directly connected to the digital imaging subsystem.”

Whilst it is uncertain when, if ever, such features will be introduced to Apple’s iconic and globally dominant range of smartphones, it is unlikely that such features will be included in the eagerly awaited and heavily rumoured Apple iPhone 5.

Apple iPhone 5 Rumours

Long the thing of mystery, it is largely expected that the next-generation Apple handset will follow the timeline set out by its iPhone 4S predecessor with an Apple iPhone 5 UK release date expected in late September or early October.

Tipped to be the first device to come pre-installed with the company’s recently unveiled iOS 6 software, a recent spate of iPhone 5 rumours have suggested the handset will come in for a complete design overhaul with a quad-core processor and potentially a larger screen lining up for inclusion.

Would you be tempted by a smartphone with an interchangeable lens camera? Let us know via the T3 Twitter and Facebook feeds.

Via: USPTO

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