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LG Innotek is developing an under-display camera, sparking rumors of an all-screen iPhone.

Apple is rumored to be working with its Korean suppliers on developing smartphone under-display cameras (UDC), sparking speculations of an all-screen iPhone in the future. LG Innotek is reportedly leading the charge in the development of UPC (under panel camera) technology, which would allow the camera to sit beneath the display without any visible camera lens holes. This would give the iPhone a seamless, all-screen look. The anticipated timeline for the arrival of this technology is after 2026.

One of the challenges with UPC technology is the potential loss in image quality and brightness as light travels through the display area before reaching the camera lens. To address this, LG Innotek is working on a “freeform optic” multiple-lens system to improve image quality and boost the light intensity ratio around the optical module. LG Innotek has been actively patenting their innovations, signaling more advancements in the near future.

LG Display, a partner of LG Innotek, is also involved in the development of UPC technology. Their goal is to increase light transmittance to 20% by 2023 and 40% by 2024, aligning with the standards Apple is looking for. Meanwhile, Apple is said to have tested a UPC sample from an undisclosed vendor but was not satisfied with the performance.

Before adopting under-screen camera technology, Apple reportedly plans to integrate under-panel Face ID technology in its 2025 iPhone 17 Pro. This model is expected to be the last premium iPhone with a circular cutout for the front-facing camera. This information comes from insights shared by analyst Ross Young.

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