Canon to break into smartphones?

Canon smartphone lens
(Image credit: Canon)

As the line between smartphones and cameras continues to blur, perhaps it's not surprising that Canon is apparently designed smartphone-focused tech. A new rumor reports that Canon has designed a smartphone lens add-on, which will apparently be capable of different focal lengths and will likely be held together magnetically, according to the leaked design images.

While lenses for iPhone and Android phones have been around for a while, Canon's design looks much, much larger than the majority of the products currently available. While most products will slot over the phone's camera, it's not immediately clear whether this design from Canon would do the same.

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As reported by Canon News, the two example images that show the new design actually interacting with a phone show it clamping the handset towards its middle, rather than being positioned over the camera itself. It could be that this example image is purely meant to show how the clamping mechanism works, but the size of the add-on also looks like it would be quite unwieldy if it was positioned over the phone's camera.

However, there also doesn't seem to be any kind of wire to connect it to the phone either. It seems likely that this lens add-on might connect wirelessly to the phone and be controlled by an app – although this is pure speculation.

While there's no further details on what kind of focal lengths we could expect from this potential new product, if users are able to swap out their lenses then we could be seeing a wide range of focal lengths from this product.

There's no guarantee that this interesting new product design from Canon will ever come to market (Canon does a lot of product development and we don't always see the fruits of its labor). However, we have seen some quirky products from Canon recently, including the Canon PowerShot Zoom, so perhaps we'll hear more about this design in the future…

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Louise Carey

With over a decade of photographic experience, Louise arms Digital Camera World with a wealth of knowledge on photographic technique and know-how – something at which she is so adept that she's delivered workshops for the likes of ITV and Sue Ryder. Louise also brings years of experience as both a web and print journalist, having served as features editor for Practical Photography magazine and contributing photography tutorials and camera analysis to titles including Digital Camera Magazine and  Digital Photographer. Louise currently shoots with the Fujifilm X-T200 and the Nikon D800, capturing self-portraits and still life images, and is DCW's ecommerce editor, meaning that she knows good camera, lens and laptop deals when she sees them.