Apple’s next iPad Pro could have a high-resolution 3D camera creating an ‘all-new productivity experience’

  • Next year, AppleiPads could have a new kind of 3D camera using a technology called “time of flight,” according to a well-respected analyst.
  • 2019 iPhones are also expected to have an improved Face ID facial recognition camera, according to the note seen by Business Insider.

Apple’s new iPad Pros were revealed this Tuesday, but analysts are already speculating about what next year’s models could have.

According to Ming-Chi Kuo, a well-respected analyst for TF International Securities, next year’s iPad Pro could have an advanced 3D camera using a technology called “time of flight.” Kuo is well-known for accurately predicting future Apple products.

A high-quality 3D camera is needed for augmented reality applications, a kind of technology that displays computer graphics in the real world. Apple CEO Tim Cook has publicly said he’s excited about the potential of AR.

From Thursday’s note, seen by Business Insider:

We give a greater than 50% probability that the new iPad in 4Q19/1Q20 may adopt ToF (our previous forecast that the 2H19 new iPhone will not adopt ToF remains unchanged). We believe that 3D modelling captured by ToF and then edited by an Apple Pencil on an iPad will create an all-new productivity experience for design applications in a totally different manner from computers.

Kuo previously predicted that a time-of-flight 3D camera could show up on iPhones released in 2020, which he reiterated in Thursday’s report.

“The iPhone’s adoption of ToF will create the new AR experience and improve photo quality,” he wrote.

Kuo also adds that all 2019 iPhones will come with an improved Face ID facial recognition camera. His research is geared towards investors in Apple’s Asian supply chain; he identifies IQE, Lumentum, and Win Semi as companies that could benefit from Apple’s 3D-camera obsession.