Today Xiaomi released a video showing the introduction of the technology by the liquid camera team, the second prize winner of the 2021 Xiaomi Annual Technology Award. This lens was first launched on the Xiaomi MIX FOLD folding screen mobile phone, realizing the coexistence of telephoto and macro, and it is also the first liquid lens camera in the industry to achieve mass production.
The technical team said that under the premise of ensuring high pixels and module size, this camera achieves the same 3cm macro imaging, and the image quality of the central field of view is nearly doubled. MIX FOLD’s mobile phone screen can present up to 12.25 times the lossless magnification effect.
The engineers of Xiaomi’s liquid camera have innovatively designed the focusing solution and developed the AF algorithm by themselves to achieve high-precision focusing in a large object distance range, and solve the problem of poor image quality for conventional mobile phones to achieve macro effects by cropping and enlarging pictures.
Technicians said that the material, structure and driving method of the liquid camera itself are different from those of traditional solid-state lens cameras. The liquid lens is like putting a drop of water into a plastic capsule, and it can be precisely controlled while retaining its original shape. The motor design presents a lot of difficulties.
Due to the complex assembly and connection methods, nano-scale high precision and high sensitivity of liquid, the development of liquid cameras is a huge challenge. The team spent a lot of time in the R&D process performing simulations and performance impact assessments to determine the proper specification of components and strike a balance between design performance and mass production.
The Xiaomi liquid camera engineer also revealed that the yield rate of this product was less than 10% at first, but it has increased to 90% after hard work.