Samsung Electronics is planning to introduce automatic focus (AF) function for a front-camera of its next flagship smartphone, (Galaxy S8), as the company is trying to offer differentiated functions to the market.
According to unnamed sources cited by Korean etnews.com,
Samsung will introduce an encoder-type AF actuator for the front camera of Galaxy S8. The AF actuator is part of a smartphone's camera module. It controls the position of the camera's lenses and autonmatically adjusts its focus. Cameras equipped with AF actuators automatically find the optimal focal distance according to where the subjects are located. The new camera with will be able to take pictures of subjects that are located in different distances more clearly.
Until now, Samsung has been mostly using fixed focus-type front-cameras because they were compact in size and cheap.
Actuators that will be used in the Galaxy S8 will use a encoder method instead of VCM (Voice Coil Motor) method, which is typically used for rear-cameras. While VCM method has coils in positioned in the center of the lenses, the encoder method has coils placed at the side, allowing the camera module to be slimmer.