As previously reported, the 2019 update to the iPhone XS Max is expected to include a triple-lens camera system, but a new report from Bloomberg has shed light on what we can expect in the 2020 iPhones.
Apple is expected to unveil a new 3D camera lens system with advanced Augmented Reality (AR) capabilities as soon as next year. While Apple already uses a 3D camera system on the iPhone's front-facing camera for Face ID, the current system uses a dot-projection technology with a limited range of up to 50cm. The new 3D camera system on the rear of the 2020 iPhone is expected to use laser scanning rather than dot-projection, and will be able to scan the environment around you up to a distance of 15 feet and create a 3D construction of the real world.
Industry analysts expect AR to have a wider mass-market appeal than Virtual Reality, and Apple's CEO Tim Cook has publicly discussed the potential of AR. A new 3D camera with laser projection technology would significantly improve the iPhone's AR capabilities, providing more accurate depth perception and better placement of virtual objects over the real world. The camera system would also be able to capture depth when taking photos.