No one outside of Cupertino is really sure what Apple's next smartphone might offer, but supply chain leaks can occasionally offer a glimpse at what's in store - or send rumor seekers completely off the beaten path.
Apple may be looking to wow iPhone owners again this year by further improving upon the camera optics introduced with last year's iPhone 5S.
Already widely hailed as one of the most-used smartphone cameras, this year's iPhone 6 could make the leap to 10 megapixels "or more," capable of packing even more image quality into those mobile images.
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Of course, Apple executives have frequently reminded us that megapixel count alone isn't everything, so next-generation iPhone buyers may have something other than more MPs to look forward to as well.
ARTON or bust
According to an unverified report on Chinese website IT168, the new iPhone could also benefit from a wider f/1.8 aperture capable of throwing even more light onto its image sensor than last year's model.
More intriguing, the same report cites unnamed sources from within Apple's Taiwanese supply chain who claim a Japanese company called JSR will be providing "interchangeable resin lenses" for the very same camera lens.
Such lenses would reportedly be made from a new, transparent resin known as ARTON, which JSR says offers superior "optical characteristics" and "dimension stability" that are "best suited for optical applications."
Lending credence to the last bit of this rumor is the fact that Apple was recently granted two patents for interchangeable camera lenses for the iPhone, although it's too early to know if they'll actually make their way onto this year's model.
We suggest you take the above with a few grains of salt, but we should know all when the new iPhone is unveiled later this year.
- Check out our full review of Apple's latest iPad mini 2 with Retina Display!