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Samsung is not planning to include a ToF (time of flight) sensor in its upcoming Galaxy S22 flagship smartphone, according to Korea IT News, due to the South Korean tech-giant believing the technology lacks a "clear advantage" for the front-end consumer.

galaxy-s21-iphone-12-pro-max.jpg

Apple first introduced ToF, or LiDAR, with the iPad Pro in 2020, and first on the iPhone with the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max. LiDAR, in simple terms, measures the time light takes to reach a destination and back. Using that data, devices can map and create 3D spaces or objects.

Samsung included a ToF sensor in its Galaxy Note 20 that was released last year; however, Korea IT News notes that it "did not meet its expectations." Samsung believed that the new sensor and data would "boost effects of its smartphone cameras," but has ultimately decided that LiDAR lacks applications that "can induce" customers.
However, the company decided to remove the technology from the Galaxy Note 20 that was released in the fall last year as the technology’s level of use did not meet its expectation. While it expected that the technology would boost effects of its smartphone cameras as the technology is capable of 3D sensing, the technology remained as a means of assisting picture-taking due to lack of ‘killer applications’ that can induce use of technology from consumers.
While Samsung decides not to include a LiDAR sensor in its upcoming flagship device, Apple is continuing to expand its adoption of the technology. Wedbush analysts believe that Apple will include LiDAR in all models of the iPhone 13 lineup, rather than just the Pro devices. Alongside being available on more devices, the sensor is expected to receive improvements in recognizing and detecting corners and edges as part of a new and improved camera system.

Article Link: Samsung May Drop Time-of-Flight Sensor in Next Flagship Galaxy Phone
 
Last edited:

GubbyMan

macrumors 6502
Apr 3, 2011
377
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I hope Apple will keep improving their LiDAR. I want it for more accurate AR overlays and occlusion, more precise measurement in the measure app, better quality 3D scanning with no visible artifacts and camera features like accurate portrait mode and portrait mode video.

Sadly, this is looking more like another 3D Touch at the moment. It's a cool feature that works well in some regards but that most people don't care or even don't know about.
 
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Serban55

macrumors 68000
Oct 18, 2020
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macrumors writes "Samsung included a ToF sensor in its Galaxy Note 20 that was released last year"

and the quote is "However, the company decided to remove the technology from the Galaxy Note 20 that was released in the fall last year"
 
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aberamati

macrumors member
Jul 10, 2017
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LIDAR in iPhone & iPad is just for testing & development of their AR headset project.
If Apple introduces a headset with unmatched tracking & Augmentation capabilities, that could be the thing that makes VR/AR headsets mainstream
 
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ckater

macrumors newbie
Jan 27, 2010
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Funny. Apple is clearly hiding some of the purpose in the dark. So Samsung first copied, then realized it has no own plan für the use.
Let me predict: If Apple shows his cards, Samsung will re-add the sensor in no time.
 
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ingambe

macrumors regular
Mar 22, 2020
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It's not clear to me if Apple is overestimating the usefulness of LiDAR, or if they know it isn't that useful yet but have another shoe (e.g. glasses) to drop.
I agree, until a hypothetical apple glass. There is hardly a mainstream usage for lidar. Wait and see...
 
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Ramchi

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Dec 13, 2007
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Funny. Apple is clearly hiding some of the purpose in the dark. So Samsung first copied, then realized it has no own plan für the use.
Let me predict: If Apple shows his cards, Samsung will re-add the sensor in no time.
Meanwhile those iPhone customers paid ransom for LiDAR also sitting duck like Samung....😁😁
 
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Ramchi

macrumors 65816
Dec 13, 2007
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When LiDAR topics came before iPhone 12 Pro MAX I had raised the purpose and demonstrated feature for the usage of LiDAR since it was already made available in the iPad Pro few years back. All those who supported this feature could throw arguments like immersive VR, Autocad drawings etc....but apparently not many are accusing this feature obviously due to limited real world appeal or use as of now. But consumers being lured into this as big and have paid huge money for a dump squib
 
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reyesmac

macrumors 6502a
Jul 17, 2002
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If lidar is not on the phone that would make it harder for Batman to use his surveillance tools to hack into everyones phones to view all the rooms in the city to find the joker.
Maybe Samsung should include tech that is useful instead of just including things they heard apple would eventually include on the iPhone.
 
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d686546s

macrumors member
Jan 11, 2021
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I have no doubts that LiDAR is useful for certain use cases and adds distinctive benefits there. The question outside of tech forums always is how many people really can or even want to take advantage of this and are prepared to cover the cost.

I think choice is great and bully if companies can offer beefed up pro versions to those keen on having the best and the latest, but until I can see a clear case for how it would meaningfully impact my life I'll continue shrug when it comes to LiDAR (or even three camera lenses).
 
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JonGarrett

macrumors regular
Mar 27, 2016
129
194
New York, NY
macrumors writes "Samsung included a ToF sensor in its Galaxy Note 20 that was released last year"

and the quote is "However, the company decided to remove the technology from the Galaxy Note 20 that was released in the fall last year"
I think they meant ToF on the Note 10, the Note 10 was the first Galaxy with ToF
 
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JonGarrett

macrumors regular
Mar 27, 2016
129
194
New York, NY
Meanwhile those iPhone customers paid ransom for LiDAR also sitting duck like Samung....😁😁
??? Samsung had ToF on the Note 10 not the Note 20 as this article misleads you to believe.

Lemme ask you, are you aware that Samsung has traveled in time and back so they can copy Apple and release a phone with a foldable display and the next one later this year will have the camera UNDER the display? If that wasn't enough, Samsung also traveled in time so they could copy Tile and release an NFC tracker and release 3 Bluetooth trackers including one that uses UWB before Apple.

Samsung also lept into the future to include a spectrometer on the Galaxy S22/S23.

Amazing how they can release technology first and still be accused of copying Apple.
 
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Koni17

macrumors member
Nov 2, 2016
45
125
Samsung (and Apple for that matter) is relying on developers to take full advantage of LiDAR and introduce killer apps that will justify putting expensive LiDAR hardware in the device.

If they have released it for a few years and don't see a large amount of users using LiDAR based apps (other than the camera in special situations), then cutting costs by removing it is a no-brainer. Hardly any users are going to notice it disappeared.
 
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farewelwilliams

Suspended
Jun 18, 2014
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I have no doubts that LiDAR is useful for certain use cases and adds distinctive benefits there. The question outside of tech forums always is how many people really can or even want to take advantage of this and are prepared to cover the cost.

I think choice is great and bully if companies can offer beefed up pro versions to those keen on having the best and the latest, but until I can see a clear case for how it would meaningfully impact my life I'll continue shrug when it comes to LiDAR (or even three camera lenses).
I thought live photos were useless until I realized I wanted a little more content from my previous trips where I left live photos on. it's quite nice to have that extra info.

With Halide, you can save the depth map along with your pictures then switch to AR mode and physically walk into your photos. Kinda useless now, but I've been doing that for most of my photos now incase AR glasses make the photos pop.
 
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