Xiaomi files patent for camera phone with rotating pop-up camera

(Image credit: LetsGoDigital / Xiaomi)

Xiaomi has recently filed a new patent for a camera phone that features a pop-up camera module that can also be rotated. The benefit of this is that it enables the smartphone manufacturer to create an uninterrupted screen display that doesn't have to house a notch or a hole for the selfie camera.

A pop-up camera module isn't anything new from Xiaomi, as the manufacturer has experimented with this interesting piece of tech in previous patents. We've also seen Xiaomi explore rotating/ pivoting camera systems as well. 

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As reported by LetsGoDigital, Xiaomi filed this patent with the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office) at the end of 2019. This documentation was subsequently released on 18 February 2021, showing a Xiaomi camera phone with a large uninterrupted screen and narrow screen edges. There's no front-facing camera, but there is a receiver included in the bezel. 

The rotating pop-up camera module consists of a triple camera with flash arranged horizontally. In order to use the cameras for selfies, the user simply raises the module up and rotates it around.

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Being able to rotate the main camera unit around means that users will be able to take advantage of the better image quality that rear cameras typically offer. It also means that the display won't be interrupted by camera notches or holes, which some users can find ugly or distracting.

It's worth noting that while Xiaomi has explored plenty of patents with rotating or pop-up camera modules, we haven't seen a physical product incorporating this technology yet. However, with so much focus on the concept, we wouldn't be surprised to see it pop up in a future Xiaomi camera phone. 

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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.