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iPhone 7’s innovative dual-lens camera reportedly cancelled

The majority of iPhone 7 Plus rumours in recent months have suggested the phone’s rear camera will feature a dual lens system to improve the quality of photos and power other, unannounced features. Such a camera would allow the iPhone to capture more light in every photo but would increase complexity.
As BGR reports, a Weibo post today indicates the feature may not arrive this year after all. An insider at Foxconn, the company that manufactures the iPhone, revealed today that the plans have been cancelled due to “immature technology.” Apparently, the system isn’t ready for primetime yet, likely because of the complexities of the setup.
Rumours surrounding the camera suggest it would also have optical image stabilisation, a wide-angle sensor and even an optical zoom, capable of achieving 2-3x magnification of images. It would only be offered on the 5.5-inch Plus model, in part to differentiate the phone from the standard version and make it a more “premium” handset.
While today’s report is unconfirmed, it could add further substance to other rumours that the iPhone 7 may be a “disappointment.” Noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has previously said the phone will have “no standout features” and the postponing of the dual-lens camera is likely to reinforce this.
The iPhone 7 is expected to offer only incremental improvements over last year’s iPhone 6s. The design will remain largely the same, with only redesigned antenna strips standing out on the phone’s chassis. Some rumours have suggested the physical home button may be replaced by a capacitive touch-sensitive one, although this also remains unconfirmed.
Notably, Apple is widely expected to remove the 3.5mm headphone jack from the iPhone 7, instead requiring consumers connect headsets through the Lightning port. This could further hamper the handset’s sales if customers are reluctant to abandon their current universally compatible headphones.
Apple is said to have a much more substantial upgrade planned for the iPhone in 2017. It is thought the company will skip the iPhone 7s in favour of releasing the iPhone 8 next year, including an OLED display and a glass and metal design. There’ll also be tangible performance improvements and likely the dual camera system originally destined for the iPhone 7 Plus.
As always with leaks, it’s best to take the reports with a note of caution. Plans change frequently when developing products and Apple could change its course again before the iPhone 7 is unveiled in September.
If the dual camera system really hasn’t made the cut then the company could be in for a hard time with the new handset. After suffering its first quarterly decline in iPhone sales earlier this year, Ming-Chi Kuo earlier anticipated total shipments could recede to 2014 levels if the iPhone 7 fails to resonate with consumers.

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