This mind-blowing video reveals the future of smartphone cameras

Qualcomm has created depth sensing cameras smart enough to see beyond sight

In the race to improve the senses of machines ever further, Qualcomm has shown off a new system that could let your next smartphone see depth with stunning detail.

You need to see the video to really be blown away but, essentially, this new kit lets you see in full 3D. So point this camera at a scene then scroll around to see it from different angles - yup as if cameras were floating all around the objects. This is the future.

The new Qualcomm Spectra ISP module, as it’s called, communicates with the camera module to detect depth on this whole new level. Using an infrared illuminator and IR camera the high resolution depth map is created. The result could be phones, tablets and more that can see in a whole new way.

This could be huge for augmented reality, with hand recognition at a level that would allow for control of virtual objects with real hand movements, potentially. For facial recognition accuracy can be hugely improved. For low light photography the ability of cameras should excel. The possibilities are massively exciting.

All this also means camera quality is improved for photos and videos taken normally too. 

Qualcomm has said it will announce more details later this year. Expect to see this appear in future smartphone chips soon.

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Luke Edwards
Luke Edwards

Luke is a freelance writer and editor with over two decades of experience covering tech, science and health. Among many others he writes across Future titles covering health tech, software and apps, VPNs, TV, audio, smart home, antivirus, broadband, smartphones, cars and plenty more. He also likes to climb mountains, swim outside and contort his body into silly positions while breathing as calmly as possible.