Samsung S Pen with a Camera in the Works
Samsung is known for producing cutting edge technology, making new devices that are often ahead of its time. This time, a patent for an S Pen equipped with a camera that's capable of optical zoom has surfaced online which will surely change the way mobile photography is done, if it makes it out of the development process.
Samsung is on a roll when it comes to developing new technology. The South Korean tech giant has recently been granted a patent by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for an S Pen that comes embedded with its own camera.
Samsung filed the patent in February of 2017 but was just recently granted. The patent document, entitled "Electronic pen device having optical zoom" shows a series of technical drawings that show how the technology works. The optics system will be housed in the upper portion of the S Pen and will have a sensor with 4 lenses.
The system of lenses in the new S Pen gives it the capability for optical zooming. Optical zooming is known to produce higher quality pictures versus the digital zoom feature used by smartphones, due in part to their slim form factor, limiting the number of lenses that can be placed in the camera mechanism.
The new patent says that Samsung might release an S Pen with a camera to go along with a future model of the Galaxy Note. Samsung's addition of Bluetooth Low Energy technology on the Galaxy Note9's S Pen which allowed it to function as a remote control (remote shutter button and slide presentations) serves as a foundation for future variants of the S Pen, as the patent diagram shows that the S Pen will still feature a communication module, which will transmit the pictures to its tethered device.
It's too early to speculate if the next Note will feature an S Pen with an embedded camera, but it does show that Samsung is thinking ahead. Observers say that the S Pen could potentially be part of other future Samsung devices like laptops and monitors.
It's important to note that huge tech companies often file a large number of patents that are similar to this but end up being stuck in the research and development process, oftentimes not seeing the light of day.
- Images from pdfpiw.uspto.gov