iPhone 5 purple lens flare is normal, claims Apple

Apple has officially responded to claims that the new iPhone 5’s camera leaves a purple lens flare on some photos when it is pointed to, or near, a bright light, such as the sun.

After some customers contacted Apple to complain about the issue, the Cupertino company has released an official statement which, while not denying that some photos are left with a purple lens flare, claims it is to be expected. 

“Most small cameras, including those in every generation of iPhone, may exhibit some form of flare at the edge of the frame when capturing an image with out-of-scene light sources,” Apple says.

“This can happen when a light source is positioned at an angle (usually just outside the field of view) so that it causes a reflection off the surfaces inside the camera module and on to the camera sensor. Moving the camera slightly to change the position at which the bright light is entering the lens, or shielding the lens with your hand, should minimise or eliminate the effect.”

For what it’s worth, Pocket-lint is inclined to agree with Apple. Most cameras, be it those found on smartphones or even some DSLR cameras, will all suffer from some lens flare when shot at direct light. It’s not unique to Apple devices.

What’s more, lens flare can even be used in artistic and inventive ways for a more striking image. Take our two examples, both were taken with an iPhone 4S and shot in such a way as to deliberately capture some kind of “halo” effect from the sun.

Photoshop even enables users to add a Photo Flare to images. While it’s admirable that Apple has responded to customers’ complaints, we’re not sure there’s really a case to answer.