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Nokia Invests in “Click Now, Focus Later” Camera Technology

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ESPOO, Finland – Nokia is eyeing an investment in Pelican Imaging, a startup that has made progress in Lytro-style array camera technology.

Lytro Inc. at the end of 2011 released an unusual telescope-like camera that allows users to change the focus of a picture after the picture is taken. The technology uses number of micro-lenses rather than a single large lens to capture information at every pixel. Mountain View, California-based Pelican Imagine is also working on array camera technology, albeit for more compact devices, such as smartphones.

Click anywhere in the above picture to change focus

According to Bloomberg, Nokia Growth Partners, the venture capital arm of the Finnish handset maker, intends to invest in Pelican Imaging as part of Nokia’s bid to improve its smartphones.

Nokia acknowledges that algorithms for array camera software are difficult to create, thus its interest in Pelican, which has mastered the technology.

The Finnish manufacturer had launched the industry-leading 808 PureView, which features a 41 megapixel 1/1.2″ sensor, and is working to integrate the technology to its Windows Phone-running Lumia handsets. PureView uses a pixel oversampling technique that reduces an image taken at full resolution into a lower resolution picture, thus achieving higher quality and improved light sensitivity, and enables lossless zoom. The sensor though has been hit for its bulky and unwieldy dimensions.

Nokia phones with Pelican’s camera technology are expected to hit the market in 2014.

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By , International Correspondent, Cebo (Philippines) office
Published on May 13th, 2013 GMT +2

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