This phone uses gimbal-like stabilization for smooth videos (Update: More info)

The Vivo X50 is bringing gimbal-style stabilization to smartphones.


Update, May 22, 2020 (6:22AM ET): After teasing its gimbal camera tech for the upcoming Vivo X50 series, the company has now detailed how exactly it works. Vivo has posted a teaser explaining the new stabilzation tech on Chinese social media platform Weibo (via Sparrownews).

According to a machine-translated excerpt of the post, Vivo’s new camera module comes with a double-ball suspension that allows the image sensor to pivot roughly three degrees.

The five-axis video image stabilization tech is three times better than Optical Image Stabilization (OIS), claims Vivo. The brand also promises that there’s no image distortion while using the new “Micro-Cloud Gimbal� system to record videos. The tech is also supposed to perform very well in low light conditions and the camera is said to have 220% better photosensitivity compared to the Vivo X30 Pro.

The ribbon cable connecting the sensor to the phone is twice folded to allow for more flexibility of movement. The whole camera module is quite big, measuring 4.5mm thick and taking up 363mm² of space on the main board. That, according to Vivo, is five times the average area taken up by any main camera.

Vivo has also compared its new gimbal tech to typical OIS when recording videos. You can see the difference for yourself in the video below.

Original article, May 20, 2020 (6 AM ET): Vivo’s Apex 2020 concept phone packs gimbal-enabled stabilization, and it looks like the Chinese brand is bringing this radical camera tech to a production device.

Vivo has posted several teasers on its Weibo account (h/t: The Verge), touting gimbal-style image stabilization. One video shows the phone’s camera lens moving around, capturing steady video and blur-free photos. Check it out below.

The above clip also gives us a better look at the Vivo X50 camera housing, showing a square-shaped fourth camera that’s presumably a periscope lens. So you can likely expect the phone to offer improved long-range zoom as well.

Another teaser video posted by Vivo suggests that gimbal-style stabilization will enable better low-light shots. Presumably the improved stabilization allows the phone shutter to stay open even longer than traditional optical image stabilization. Check out that clip below.

It’s also worth noting that Vivo is calling it the X50 series rather than a single device, so we’ll likely see more than one X50 device. But it remains to be seen whether gimbal stabilization will come to all phones in the family.

We don’t know much else about the Vivo X50 series, but a company executive was spotted talking about the newly announced 50MP Samsung Isocell GN1 sensor. This doesn’t necessarily mean the 50MP sensor will appear in the X50 series, but it certainly seems like the firm plans to use it in some form.

The Vivo X50 series will be unveiled on June 1, so we’ll find out more about the devices and what you can do with gimbal-style stabilization then. But we’re glad to see tech from the Apex 2020 concept phone find its way into a commercial device.

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