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(Pocket-lint) - Apple is on track to putting a periscope zoom camera in its future iPhones, according to research done by a noted analyst. 

The note, released by Ming-Chi Kuo states that Apple has signed up a supplier to deliver a periscope zoom system to be used in an iPhone, and will likely be ready by 2022. 

That means - if Kuo is accurate - that the iPhone 14 series will feature an epic zoom camera similar to what we've seen in some top Android flagships over the past couple of years. 

In most instances, these zoom capabilities mean you can typically get around 5x or 10x optical zoom in a smartphone camera, and that results in images that are still sharp and detailed even when zoomed in really far. 

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This kind of technology was first shown off by Oppo during Mobile World Congress back in 2017 and involves alligning lenses internally that run perpendicular to the external lens. 

Running the lens elements horizontally inside the phone, with a right-angled prism directing light through them, means you can create a mini zoom lens without having an exceedingly large protrusion sticking out the back of the phone. 

This system has since been used in many consumer flagship phones, including the Oppo Find X2 Pro and the Huawei P40 Pro Plus. Samsung also quite famously used a similar system in its S20 Ultra and used it to push digital zoom all the way up to 100x, with less than perfect results. 

The recent iPhone rumour - published by Apple Insider - suggests Apple is almost ready to join in on that trend. If the research turns into a real product, it'll be interesting to see how Apple's method of incorporating the periscope zoom differs to its competitors. 

Writing by Cam Bunton. Originally published on 22 July 2020.