Toshiba has a Lytro-like camera for smartphones -- report

The device maker is building a camera with thousands of lenses that will let users choose what to focus on after they've taken a photograph, a Japanese newspaper reports. The technology is slated for a 2013 release.

Toshiba is building Lytro-like camera technology that lets users refocus photographs. Lytro

Toshiba is in the process of upping its smartphone camera game. The device-maker is creating Lytro-like camera technology for mobile devices that should be released before the end of 2013, according to the Japanese newspaper Asahi Shimbun (h/t Engadget).

Much like Lytro's light-field camera , Toshiba's technology reportedly lets users choose what part of a photo they'd like to focus on well after they've taken the shot. It will also allow users to put the entire picture into focus. For the most part, this type of technology has only been seen in Lytro cameras and has not yet been put to use in smartphones or tablets.

According to the Asahi Shimbun, Toshiba's camera will have 500,000 miniature lenses layered in front of a camera sensor within a cube-shaped module that's just one centimeter thick. The sensor is said to be able to capture all of the different images from the lenses, which then give the user a choice of what to focus on -- one small portion of the photograph or the entire thing. This camera can also supposedly record video in a similar fashion, which is something Lytro hasn't yet introduced.

CNET contacted Toshiba for comment. We'll update the story when we get more information.

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About the author

Dara Kerr, a freelance journalist based in the Bay Area, is fascinated by robots, supercomputers and Internet memes. When not writing about technology and modernity, she likes to travel to far-off countries.


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