Leaked patent suggests Google is working on an incredible new selfie camera

A photo of the Google Pixel 7 Pro
(Image credit: Basil Kronfli)

Details have emerged that Google could be devising a new form of under-screen front-facing camera for future Pixel phones. If the recent patent application translates into a successful implementation of the technology, it'd mean a clean, notch-free display.

The best camera phones always have a front-facing camera, which is handy not just for taking selfies, but also for features like face unlock. However, as useful as the selfie camera is, it invariably has a negative impact on screen real estate, and the overall phone aesthetic. Smartphone design is all about maximising the 'screen to body' ratio, with the slimmest possible bezels. Historically that's not quite been possible, as the display has had to make way for the selfie camera, whether that be in the form of a notch, or a punch-hole. Some manufacturers have devised more creative solutions, like the OnePlus 7 Pro which featured a pop-up selfie camera, or the Asus Zenfone 8 Flip that was able to flip its entire rear-facing camera module forward when you wanted to take a selfie.

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Ben Andrews

Ben is the Imaging Labs manager, responsible for all the testing on Digital Camera World and across the entire photography portfolio at Future. Whether he's in the lab testing the sharpness of new lenses, the resolution of the latest image sensors, the zoom range of monster bridge cameras or even the latest camera phones, Ben is our go-to guy for technical insight. He's also the team's man-at-arms when it comes to camera bags, filters, memory cards, and all manner of camera accessories – his lab is a bit like the Batcave of photography! With years of experience trialling and testing kit, he's a human encyclopedia of benchmarks when it comes to recommending the best buys.