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Samsung's Galaxy S9 dual-aperture camera feature is coming to OPPO R17 Pro

The OPPO R17 Pro will be the first non-Samsung smartphone to offer a dual-aperture camera.

Published onAugust 14, 2018

OPPO R17 flagship phone in pink and blue.
The OPPO R17
  • The upcoming OPPO R17 Pro will feature a Samsung-style dual-aperture camera, the brand confirmed.
  • A dual-aperture camera allows the phone to switch between a wide and narrow aperture, depending on the situation.

The OPPO R17 was officially revealed this week, but the Chinese brand also has the R17 Pro up its sleeve. Now, the company has taken to Weibo (h/t: Gizmochina) to reveal one key Pro feature.

“The OPPO R17 Pro is equipped with a f1.5/f2.4 smart aperture,” reads a machine-translated excerpt of the Weibo posting. The post adds that the OPPO R17 Pro is able to “intelligently” switch between apertures as well.

The “smart aperture” technology seems identical to Samsung’s dual aperture tech on the Galaxy S9, all the way down to the same f/1.5 and f/2.4 apertures.

Why would you want dual-aperture tech?

The Samsung Galaxy S9.

A camera’s aperture dictates how much light will hit the camera sensor when you take a photo and is one of the key factors for great low-light shots. Think of the aperture as your eye’s iris, widening when you enter a dark room to absorb more light and narrowing as you step into broad daylight.

However, most smartphone cameras have a fixed aperture, which means they’re stuck with one aperture size for all situations. This is where smart- or dual-aperture tech comes in, swapping between two aperture sizes in a flash. The smaller f/2.4 aperture works well for daytime shots where the sun is illuminating everything already, while the wider f/1.5 aperture is enabled in low-light situations, letting more light hit the camera sensor for better results.

Understanding aperture: What is it and how does it affect image quality?
Camera lens diaphragm shutter

This would mark the first time that a company other than Samsung has adopted dual-aperture technology for its phone. Aside from the ability to quickly change apertures to suit lighting conditions, dual-aperture technology can also be integrated into a single-camera smartphone. So the technology is an interesting way of getting more mileage out of single-camera phones.

Nevertheless, dual-aperture tech hasn’t exactly boosted Galaxy S9 sales. In fact, Samsung flagship sales are at record lows in the face of competition from the likes of Huawei, OnePlus and Xiaomi. However, if Samsung and Oppo want to adopt triple-camera tech, they could most likely retain the dual-aperture functionality.

We don’t know much else about the OPPO R17 Pro otherwise, but, if it’s like the OPPO R15 Pro, it’ll most likely have better low-light performance and a more capable chipset. We’ll just have to wait and see what the Chinese brand has store for us.

Would you like to see dual-aperture technology on more phones? Let us know in the comments!

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