Vivo patents a smartphone with a removable camera that can fly into the air thanks to four propellers, for beautiful remote shots
Many of us no longer leave home without a smartphone in our pocket. We take our cell phones everywhere we go and they often end up next to us on the table. If it is up to the Chinese manufacturer Vivo, our smartphone will occupy an even more prominent place in the future. The company prefers to see them fly, literally in this case.
The Chinese manufacturer has filed a very remarkable patent for a Vivo smartphone with a flying camera. The camera can be detached from the smartphone, after which it can fly into the air to take the most creative photos from a variety of angles.
Vivo smartphone with flying camera
The patent called “Electronic device” was filed for Vivo Mobile Communication with the World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO) in December 2020. The 20-page documentation was released earlier today, July 1, 2021.
At first glance, it appears to be a normal smartphone. However, there is an additional compartment on the bottom, here a camera system is hidden with a dual camera, three infrared proximity sensors, four propellers and an additional battery. The camera system can be slid out of the housing and, together with the mounting bracket, is completely removable.
The mounting bracket, with integrated fingerprint sensor, can be detached from the compact camera system. The camera system can then fly into the air, thanks to the integrated propellers – in order to take pictures from a greater distance. The infrared sensors can be used to calculate the distance to other objects in order to avoid collisions during flight.
In the air, the “flight camera” is able to change position to maintain more flexibility while taking pictures. Presumably the control will be via the smartphone, possibly Air Gestures will also be supported – however, the documentation does not go into this in more detail.
It does mention that one camera will be located on the top, the other will be placed on the front – by positioning the cameras in different places, the user retains the ability to shoot from different angles. Optionally, a third and fourth camera can be added.
Airselfie camera for aerial photography
By the way, the idea is not entirely new. There are already so-called Airselfie cameras available, look for example at this offer from Air Pix on Amazon – which is also shown in the image above. Back in 2018, LetsGoDigital also published about a Samsung display device that was also equipped with four propellers to fly.
However, Vivo is the first manufacturer that wants to store this particular camera drone inside the smartphone itself. Thus, it will have to be a relatively compact camera – the Air Pix variant is over 10cm in size and will therefore never fit into the casing of a smartphone.
This also has a clear disadvantage, because if the camera system is too small/too light, it is more likely to suffer from wind turbulence – which does not help the sharpness of the images. Possibly Vivo’s Gimbal stabilization system could come in handy here.
Vivo has introduced several surprising smartphones to the market over the years. Consider, for example, the innovative Nex series, which includes the Vivo NEX 3 and the Nex Dual Display smartphone. In the meantime, the company is also trying to gain a foothold in Europe – just as sister companies OnePlus and Oppo previously made the crossing to the old continent. Several Vivo phones are now offered in Europe.
To further increase brand awareness, the company is also an official sponsor of EURO2020. Many will have noticed the Vivo X60 advertisement on the many LED boards around the match field during every EURO2020 match. The X60 is also the first Vivo smartphone where the camera system was designed in collaboration with German lens manufacturer Carl Zeiss.
Whether the Chinese manufacturer will eventually see an opportunity to put a smartphone with a flying camera on the market, only time will tell. In any case, it could provide the necessary publicity.