LG Innotek will reveal at CES 2023, for the first time in the world, the Optical Telephoto Zoom Camera Module, a new optical solution offering up to 9x optical zoom for smartphones.
LG may have left the smartphone market, but its affiliate LG Innotek continues to develop solutions to create better cameras for smartphones. The Optical Telephoto Zoom Camera Module – or Optical Zoom Camera for short – is the company’s newest product, and it will be revealed for the first time in the world during the world’s largest IT and home appliances exhibition of Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2023.
The company claims that its optical telephoto zoom camera module is a micro-component developed for the smartphone by integrating the telescopic camera functions that were mostly applied to the professional cameras such as DSLR or mirrorless camera and adds that “it is mounted on the rear side of the smartphone to enable the image and video to be taken without image quality degradation even when zooming from long distance.”
The technology of LG Innotek in the optical telephoto zoom camera module field is unrivaled, according to the company, who adds that “LG Innotek also received the ‘CES 2023 Innovation Award’ recently with the optical telephoto zoom camera module.”
The information now shared by LG Innotek states that “by applying LG Innotek’s ‘optical telephoto zoom camera module’ to the smartphone, optical zoom filming is possible in the high-magnification of 4~9 times section. There are two main types of zooming, optical and digital. Unlike the digital zoom that simply magnifies the size of the image to have serious quality degradation, optical zoom camera moves the lens directly to zoom the subject, which has advantage of maintaining the high image quality.”
Zoom up to 9x with only one module
The main advantage of this product is that optical zoom camera filming is possible in all magnifications freely in the sections of 4~9 times with one module, says LG Innotek, noting that “in contrast, existing ‘fixed zoom module’ enables optical zoom camera filming only in the specific magnification, and digital zoom is applied to other magnification sections. For example, both the 4-time and 9-time fixed zoom modules must be mounted for filming in high-definition in the two magnifications of 4 times and 9 times.”
For the smartphone manufacturers, less modules will result in providing more space inside the phone, and in enhancing the battery efficiency. This is the reason that the industry is focusing the interest in LG Innotek’s ‘Optical Telephoto Zoom Camera Module’.
The technology now being announced is the result of the exclusive optical technology of LG Innotek development that is accumulated for almost 20 years. LG Innotek developed the zoom actuator (component for moving the lens to change the focal distance or to set to the clean focus) to realize clear and clean image quality in all sections between the 4~9 times magnification.
Here is some more information shared by LG Innotek about the new product:
Zoom actuator is a key component of the camera module that has definitive impact to the image quality. To obtain the high-definition filming material, the zoom actuator must move the lens quickly and accurately to set the focus. Especially, the ‘Optical Telephoto Zoom Camera Module’ has long lens moving distance (length of the lens moving section), so controlling the moving distance accurately is very important.
The zoom actuator developed by LG Innotek not only provides accuracy compared to the existing component, but also high moving speed and durability with less battery consumption. LG Innotek’s zoom actuator is also added with the control technology of moving the lens precisely in micrometer (㎛, 1m per 1 million) unit.
Optical continuous zoom
Moreover, the OIS (Optical Image Stabilizer) applied with the new design method reduces the blur phenomenon from shaking, and increases the definition. As the zoom camera can show the shaking more clearly, OIS is considered a key function.
In addition, the module thickness was minimized to remove the ‘camera bump’. In the general optical zoom module, the focal distance is longer in the higher magnification to result in thicker module, and to solve this problem, LG Innotek newly innovated the lens design and module structure.
LG Innotek’s plan is to solidify the global No. 1 position in the smartphone camera module market through the ‘Optical Telephoto Zoom Camera Module’.
In particular, LG Innotek and Qualcomm Technologies are working closely to optimize software for optical continuous zoom that will be applied to the new premium Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 Mobile Platform. It will enhance the image tuning custom for the optics, which includes Auto-Focus, Auto-Exposure, Auto-White Balance, lens shading correction and much more. Users will be able to focus quickly. And the photos and videos will have stunning image quality.
Starting with the release of products at CES 2023, which will be held next month, LG Innotek and Qualcomm Technologies plan to speed up joint promotions for global smartphone manufacturers.
The CEO Jeong Cheol-dong mentioned that “Smartphone cameras will be evolved into the direction of enhancing the performance of optical zoom centrally on the premium smartphones”, and added, “As the global leading smartphone camera module company, LG Innotek will be one step ahead in introducing innovative products that provide pleasant experience and good impression to the customers, and innovation will be provided continuously for customer value”.