ZTE teases Sept. 1 launch of first phone with a front camera under the display

Time to say goodbye to notches?

Eli Blumenthal Senior Editor
Eli Blumenthal is a senior editor at CNET with a particular focus on covering the latest in the ever-changing worlds of telecom, streaming and sports. He previously worked as a technology reporter at USA Today.
Expertise 5G, mobile networks, wireless carriers, phones, tablets, streaming devices, streaming platforms, mobile and console gaming,
Eli Blumenthal
2 min read

ZTE's latest Axon phone will have no notch or cutout for the front camera.


Notches, hole punches and other cutouts have become a staple on modern phones as companies look to find a place to put a front camera while still keeping the bezels around the sides down to a minimum. 

On Sept. 1 Chinese phone-maker ZTE says it will launch a new Axon 20 5G phone in China that will change up the game, with the company sharing a teaser on Sunday promising to unveil the "world's first mass-produced 5G smartphone featuring under-display camera."

The technology, as its name implies, allows the front camera to be embedded underneath the display, giving a cleaner look and, potentially, a more uninterrupted viewing experience. 

Other Chinese companies have been experimenting with the technology as well, with phone-makers Xiaomi and Oppo showcasing respective prototypes of their own last year and Vivo announcing a prototype earlier this year. 

The new phone's other specs aren't as clear, though XDA Developers reports that it will have a 6.92-inch OLED display and a 4,120-mAh battery. The under-screen front camera will have 32 megapixels to go with four rear cameras: 64-, 8- and two 2-megapixel lenses.

Pricing remains a mystery, as does any information on whether the phone will arrive outside of China. While it once featured a prominent US presence, in recent years ZTE found itself the target of the Trump administration over security concerns and the company's connections to the Chinese government. In June, the US Federal Communications Commission deemed ZTE and fellow Chinese tech giant Huawei's respective networking divisions to be national security threats