Samsung’s newest Galaxy Tab S6 may seem unique for having two cameras, one of which is has a wide-angle lens, but it’s hardly the first tablet to have more than one sensor on its back. Google’s Project Tango tablet had a handful of sensors, all of which work in concert to give the device “AR eyes”. It seems that Apple will be taking a similar path but with a simpler and less expensive solution, a single 3D Time-of-Flight sensor for its next iPad Pro.
Rumors have already started circulating that the upcoming iPad Pros that are expected to launch in March will also have more than one camera. But rather than stop at two like the Galaxy Tab S6, Apple is believed to use a triple camera setup. Little has been known about those cameras but at least one of those may have been identified.
Korean media report that local company Derkwoo Electronics will be providing stiffeners and brackets for the said iPad Pro’s 3D ToF sensors. Derkwoo has already been providing those components for Apple’s iPhones and iPads but for regular cameras so it’s not out of character for it to also approach the same company for ToF sensors.
It might seem overkill for a tablet that usually isn’t even often used for taking photos. That 3D ToF, however, is often used more for 3D mapping and augmented reality. This could hint at Apple’s further plans for its AR projects via ARKit.
What makes this industry source tip particularly interesting is that this suggests that the iPad Pro will get a feature even before the iPhone does. The iPhone, after all, is a far easier device to carry around and use for augmented reality applications than an iPad, especially a large iPad Pro, which does raise some doubt about its probability.