Two interesting new rumors have surfaced surrounding future iPhone camera designs. The first involves a leak from Sony regarding an 8 megapixel camera the company manufactures that sounds like it's headed for the iPhone 5. 9to5 Mac reports Sony CEO Howard Stringer explained how their best image sensors are produced at a factory that was affected by the earthquake in Japan.
He noted that this problem will delay shipment of images sensors to companies like Apple. The only thing is that Sony doesn't make image sensors for Apple... yet. The Street reported in April of last year that Apple would be moving away from current supplier OmniVision for the iPhone 5, and going with an 8 megapixel Sony component instead.
The same article correctly forecast that the iPhone 4 would carry its current OmniVision 5 megapixel camera. It would make sense for Apple to keep improving the iPhone camera to keep up with the competition and improve image quality on its multimedia focused devices. It's not clear whether or not the Sony manufacturing delays will push back the release of the iPhone 5.
The second and more far-reaching rumor is actually a patent discovered by AppleInsider. Apple has been working on 3D imaging and the patent details a system that would use two built-in cameras in a mobile device to capture a stereoscopic image. The 3D images could be displayed after capture on a special screen. Apple's patent explains that the dual camera system would be superior to single-camera 3D solutions and the system could even be used to record 3D video as well.3D televisions and digital cameras have begun to surface in the consumer market, however they have yet to be commonplace. If Apple indeed goes with the 8 megapixel Sony camera for the iPhone 5, it looks like 3D will have to wait for a future generation iPhone. Maybe in a year or two we'll see an iPhone 3D. In the meantime, you can get 3D games now with Hasbro's MY3D viewer which launches tomorrow.