Samsung is out as supplier of major 2023 iPhone camera upgrade, says report

iPhone 12 Pacific Blue
iPhone 12 Pacific Blue (Image credit: Joseph Keller / iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple reportedly has a big iPhone upgrade coming in 2023.
  • A new periscope camera would make the camera bump much thinner without compromising performance.
  • A new report says Samsung will not supply this to Apple, and that there are issues with patents to deal with.

A new report from Korea claims that a future iPhone upgrade will not be supplied by Samsung.

The Elec reports:

Samsung Electro-Mechanics will be excluded from Apple's supply chain for folded zoom camera modules for iPhones launching in 2023, TheElec has learned.

A periscope camera would shrink down the size of the camera module, and possibly the bump on the back of the iPhone, without sacrificing any performance. However, Apple has reportedly encountered problems with patents for the tech (now owned by Samsung):

Samsung had used Samsung Electro-Mechanics' folded zoom technology for the Galaxy S20 Ultra for the first time.Apple is planning to apply the technology for iPhones launching in 2023, but patents are getting in its way.Samsung Electronics had secured the patents needed for the technology by acquiring Israel-based Corephotonix in 2019.

The report says that if Apple wants to include the upgrade in 2023 it needs to finalize specs and suppliers "this year", and is looking at potential alternative manufacturing partners.

Of course, none of this matters for iPhone 13. Expected to be announced in just a few weeks, the new device should replace iPhone 12 as Apple's best iPhone with rumors of a new processor and a 120Hz display on the way for the 'Pro' lineup.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design. Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9