Camera under the screen: Google files a new patent

The web giant filed a new patent application this week for a camera technology integrated into the screen.

With their increasingly imposing screens and increasingly thin borders, our smartphones have competed in imagination to get rid of the selfie camera on the front. After the pop-up cameras of the Huawei P Smart Z or Xiaomi Mi 9T (read our test here), the builders seemed to have temporarily aligned themselves with the punch, not necessarily very aesthetic, but which had the advantage of being discreet. Last year, the manufacturer ZTE tried to stand out by offering the first front sensor integrated under the screen of its Axon 20 5G. A promising idea, but which quickly showed some limits.

Google offers an ingenious prism and mirror system

© Lets Go Digital

It must be said that if the idea of ​​hiding the selfie camera under the screen is not new, the manufacturers quickly encountered technical difficulties linked to the presence of the screen on the sensor. However, the giant Google may well have found the solution to the problem. In a recent patent application of more than 20 pages filed by the company and retrieved by Let’s Go Digital, we learn that Google would like to place a “window” directly under the screen (in red on the diagram), in front of its sensor. A shimmering prism (in yellow) would then be positioned under the latter. In selfie mode, the mirror would automatically turn to let light pass through the window by a few millimeters. When not in use, the prism would tilt differently in order to display the content of a second screen (in blue in the diagram), and thus complete the main screen.

No prism for Pixel 6

Obviously, these are only working documents on which the web giant is currently working. While the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro are unveiled over the weeks, the design of the latter seems to confirm the absence of such a device. In addition, it is always good to remember that the filing of a patent does not always coincide with the release of a new product. Like Apple or Samsung, Google files a large number of patents each year, without them being used. For brands, this mainly helps to protect their ideas.

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