Apple iOS 18 adding flashlight "beam width" control

PhotonWrangler

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When I first saw this story I though that they had mounted the LEDs on a tiny servo that could shift the assembly along the Z-Axis, similar to auto-focusing camera sensors. This does not appear to be the case though.

If I'm interpreting this article correctly, the LEDs and lenses remain stationary. The LED flash module contains a 3x3 array of LEDs, some centered behind the lens and others closer to the periphery of the lens where some fresnel rings are molded into it. This causes the outer LEDs to refract more, causing a wider beam. It looks like an extremely clever way to shape the beam with no moving parts, although at the expense of brightness in the center of the pattern.

It's still not going to replace a real flashlight by a long shot, but it does offer some interesting options. Only works on iPhone 15 Pro and up.
 

PhotonWrangler

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Disagree, it will be VERY useful for me to be able to explain the difference between throw and flood with an experience people have had 😂

"Throw is like when your iphone beam is narrow, flood is when it's wide"
That makes sense. However in the context of useful brightness, the settings should probably be called "Not Bright Enough" and "Still Not Bright Enough." ;)
 

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