Breaking news: Leica + Apple partnership!

A recent, reliable source has told me that the much hyped Photokina announcement for Leica won’t be a new M, but instead a further step towards documentary photography: to put better tools in the hands of citizen photojournalists, they have decided to finally give in to collaboration requests from mobile phone makers. Apple – probably the only design equal of Leica in the phone world – has decided to take on Nokia’s Carl Zeiss partnership and gone to Leica. It’s not exactly surprising after Jobs’ launch of the iPhone 4 – which compared the design gestalt as aspiring to the Leica philosophy.

The announcement makes a lot of sense as it will also tie in with the iPhone 5’s arrival, which has traditionally been around Q3. It’s also time for a redesign of the iPhone 4, which has now seen two generations of service – much like the plastic design of the 3G/3GS.

No concrete details on the sensor – my contact was very tight-lipped about that – other than ‘it will be more than 8MP, but not as many as that ridiculous Nokia 808 thingy; image quality will be fantastic because it will be bigger than most cellphone sensors and have no anti-aliasing filter.’ The real killer, however, will be the lens: an f0.95, 35mm equivalent. It will have AF with limited (10cm, I suppose?) macro functionality, is a Leica design, and will carry the NOCTILUX-C ASPH 0.95 inscription – presumably C stands for ‘compact’? I have no idea how thick this is going to be though – maybe there’s a lens protrusion, or folded optics, or a similar trick to keep the thickness down. Hopefully it won’t be too much of a pocket lump.

What excites me the most, however, is that they apparently got Apple to cave in an offer not only a physical, two-stage shutter button, but the option of saving a DNG file too – hooray! MT

Comments

  1. Be careful, Apple may sue now claiming they invented the April Fools’ joke.

  2. Sad thing is this is almost what bythom has predicted for years (just the other way around), I could see some compact camera brands having a ‘moment’ until they got it…

    Well done, Ming.

    On a Side note, thank you for your insights on the D800 ;-)

    Kind Regards
    Carl.

  3. Nice one, had me all excited for a brief moment there :)

  4. zoodin88 says:

    rofls, just looked at the date.

    basterd! :P

  5. zoodin88 says:

    omg this indeed is news!

  6. Just when I thought I would holding off on upgrading from the iPhone 4S this year…

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