Apple's next iPhone will likely have a next-generation front-facing camera that can sense 3D space as well as enable applications like facial recognition, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo wrote in a recent note to investors.
One application for the new 3D front camera is for games that can show the user's face in the place of a character, according to the note, which was seen by Businesss Insider.
Other applications include facial recognition, iris recognition, and improved selfies.
"We think the advanced 3D front camera system will allow the new iPhone to perform 3D sensing and modeling," Kuo wrote.
A sensor camera that can locate how far objects are away from it could enable other applications in augmented reality, an emerging technology that Apple CEO Tim Cook is fond of discussing in public.
Apple recently bought Faceshift, a company that worked on AR-related facial transformation technology. The sensor also purportedly includes technology from PrimeSense, an AR company Apple bought in 2013.
The front sensor module will use an infrared transmitter and receiver, according to Kuo, and will use a laser technology from Lumentum, as has been previously rumored. Kuo believes the entire camera module will be produced by Sony.
"Future iPhones may come with a similar system for the rear camera," Kuo wrote.
Here are some other rumors we've been hearing about the "iPhone 8," a redesigned model expected to launch this fall.
- Apple will sell a model with a 5.8-inch wraparound screen, with no borders or bezels, using OLED display technology which enables darker blacks and better power consumption.
- The construction of the iPhone 8 could be glass and stainless steel.
- The home button will be integrated into the screen.
- The iPhone 8 model could include wireless charging, allowing it to power up without plugging in a cable.
- It won't have a headphone jack.
- It could cost over $1000.