Early January, the company raised $15 million in a funding round including Samsung Ventures, iPhone manufacturer Foxconn and chipmaker MediaTek, all of whom with a direct interest in integrating all or part of the company's IP. More recently, the startup announced a partnership with prominent camera module integrator Samsung Electro-Mechanics (SEMCO) to develop a complete reference design based on its dual camera IP.
Dual-camera smartphones have been around since 2014, initially to bring 3D effects thanks to the stereoscopic imaging, then leveraging more software to digitally alter foreground or background focus (using a depth map) and obtain neat bokeh effects. Corephotonics is now adding zooming capabilities, beating all digital zooms to date while keeping the tele-objective mechanics within smartphone low-profile constraints.
The dual camera zoom module, only 5.5 mm in profile, combines a vertically-mounted wide field of view (FOV) camera with a narrow FOV telephoto lens mounted horizontally and aligned with a prism (forming a folded optical path).
With this optical arrangement and proprietary image fusion algorithms, the company claims its Hawkeye camera module achieves over 3x more light than the iPhone7+ and about 30 to 35% better image resolution when zooming.