Following on from Huawei partnering with camera masters Leica, and OnePlus partnering with camera masters Hasselblad, Samsung is – yes, you guessed it – exploring the possibility of partnering with camera masters Olympus.
The move would see the South Korean smartphone maker inject its already damn good camera systems (the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra's is superb) with a huge dose of photo-taking wizardry. And, with the Huawei P50 Pro rumored to come with a game-changing new rear camera array, the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra would need the new tech to hold onto its predecessor's throne as the best Android phone on Earth.
The news comes courtesy of established industry leakster Yogesh (opens in new tab), who recently posted that "both Samsung and Olympus held talks about a possible partnership" and that, while "the current status and extent of this partnership is not exactly clear", the two firms "could work on a special edition Fold or we could see this happen on 'H3' (S22 Ultra)".
This comment was pretty authoritative on its own, as Yogesh has a good track record of accurately leaking information like this, but then it got the ultimate mark of leakster approval when Samsung's leakster-in-chief, Ice universe, confirmed that "my source tells me that this is a reliable message". Check out the pair of posts below.
So it is confimed now. Hopefully this partnership will be for the next S lineup product. pic.twitter.com/PFhItgoxcSApril 7, 2021
Combined that is a pretty much bullet proof confirmation that Samsung and Olympus are looking to work together. Of course, what they will end up working on so far is not determined, however here at T3 we have to agree that the most natural fit seems to be a brand new super-advanced camera system on its next Galaxy S series flagship, which would be the S22 Ultra.
This makes especial sense considering the timing of this announcement, as too because the Samsung Galaxy Note 21 might not even happen. And, well, Samsung is very unlikely to launch a new camera system partnership on a budget device from, say, its Galaxy A range of handsets.
No, all things considered, we think Yogesh was closer to the truth with his theory that a co-designed camera system from Olympus is far more likely to launch on the S22 Ultra or on a special edition Samsung Galaxy Fold 3.
One to keep an eye on then, as it sure looks like the smartphone camera arms race is not slowing anytime soon. The good news? Android phone users can't lose – as whatever brand they opt for they're going to get a camera system that has been designed in partnership with a camera master.
- Our Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus review explains why it is a great all-rounder