The iPhone 5 has been shipping for a little more than two weeks; in that timeframe some users have noticed a purple flare or halo when the iPhone’s camera is pointed near a bright light source such as the sun.
Gizmodo reports that Apple has moved to address the issue, with the company’s support staff now offering a pre-canned email response to customers asking about the phenomenon. Apple’s engineers claim that this is a normal behavior and that customers should not point the device at a bright light source when taking a photo. Apple has even gone so far as to post a public support document:
Most small cameras, including those in every generation of iPhone, may exhibit some form of flare at the edge of the frame when capturing an image with out-of-scene light sources. This can happen when a light source is positioned at an angle (usually just outside the field of view) so that it causes a reflection off the surfaces inside the camera module and onto the camera sensor. Moving the camera slightly to change the position at which the bright light is entering the lens, or shielding the lens with your hand, should minimize or eliminate the effect.
Overall, the camera in the iPhone 5 is very similar to the one found in the iPhone 4S. In fact, Apple reduced the thickness of the camera, and moved a sapphire lens cover. Other than that, the specs remain the same.
To me, this strikes me as another boogie man similar to that of Antennagate. A handful of customers noticed this, and the media who for some unknown reason is looking for anything to bash Apple with, latched on and now there is a PR problem on Apple’s hands. Granted this hasn’t spun into a “Antennagate” level yet, but the same silliness is present. Lens flare is lens flare- just watch a J.J. Abrams film for excellent examples of this phenomenon. ZINGER!
Image courtesy of The Next Web.