While those of us who would happily trade thinner iPhones for better battery-life may be in the minority, even fans of ultra-thin phones expressed disappointment at the camera bump in the iPhone 6 and 6s. The problem Apple faced is that the laws of physics determine just how thin you can make a sensor and lens arrangement for any given aperture while retaining quality. But a patent application originally filed in 2013, continued last July and granted today could provide a solution.

Instead of the usual flat sensor, the patent describes a ‘spherically curved photosensor’ that would allow the distance between the lens elements and the sensor to be reduced, allowing for a thinner camera module …

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