A Rumor Claims that Apple is investing in LG Innotek to Secure a Stable Supply of 3-D Sensing Modules for Future iPhones
Two supply chain reports claim that Apple is planning to invest in Korean electric components maker LG Innotek to secure a stable supply of 3-D sensing modules for iPhones and iPads to be launched this year.
The sensing module, which enables a mobile device to capture 3-D data and recognize a user even in a dark environment, is a key component of iPhone X's facial recognition solution, Face ID.
The report noted that "LG Innotek united forces with Apple to develop a smartphone camera module which enables 3D photographing. The camera which uses LG Innotek's dual camera will likely to be applied for Apple's new products starting from the latter half of next year.
Sources close to the situation said, 'Apple is now studying how to apply its 3D camera technology into LG Innotek's smartphone camera. Since LG Innotek also has its own 3D camera and related technologies, such joint efforts will likely to bear fruit sometime within next year.'
Apple acquired an Israeli start-up LinX in April 2015 for US$20 million, absorbing the latter's 3D camera technology. LinX, founded in 2011, has the technology of adding more depth to photos by dividing the digital image in three stages.
A second report covering this story has added that "Apple has decided to offer financial support for the Korean supplier in the form of an upfront payment and the exact amount of its investment is unknown. Some market watchers said the move would be in line with a temporary supply shortage of the 3-D sensing modules late last year, which had affected the sales of iPhone X."
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