Qualcomm Unveils Improved Depth-Sensing Camera for Android Devices

Rumors that the next iPhone will boast an impressive depth-sensing camera that will be able to map the room in front of you in 3D are all over the place. Now, it seems as though Qualcomm is beating Apple to the punch — the company just announced its new depth-sensing tech in the form of an upgrade to Spectra.

According to a new report from TechCrunch, the advances will feature in the company’s Qualcomm Spectra Module Program, capable of improved biometric authentication and high-resolution depth sensing for mobile devices and head mounted displays.

The British firm said the module program is built on the cutting-edge technology behind the Qualcomm Spectra embedded image signal processors (ISP) family.

“Whether used for computational photography, video recording, or for computer vision applications that require accurate motion tracking, it’s clear that power efficient camera image signal processing has become more important for the next generation of mobile user experiences,” said Tim Leland, Qualcomm’s vice president of product management.

“Our breakthrough advancements in visual quality and computer vision, combined with our family of integrated Qualcomm Spectra ISPs for Snapdragon, are designed to support an ecosystem of cutting edge mobile applications for our customers,” he continued.

The next-generation ISPs feature advancements in computer vision, image quality, and power efficiency for the next Snapdragon Mobile and VR Platforms. The camera module additions include an iris authentication module, a passive depth sensing module, and an active depth-sensing module.

First launched last year, the Qualcomm Spectra camera module made it easier for manufacturers to implement dual-sensor cameras in smartphones. The new module takes things to the next level — and will require three camera sensors to take advantage of active depth sensing.

Check out a video of the camera below.