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Samsung launched its Galaxy Note 9 as its latest flagship smartphone in 2018, along with the phone the company bought Bluetooth functionality to its celebrated S Pen. With this functionality now users will be able to use the stylus as a long-range shutter button, perfect for taking selfies and group pictures from a distance.
Now, it seems that the company is looking to upgrade the photo taking functionality from the S Pen by the inclusion of a built-in camera, according to a patent which is officially granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
According to the report from Patently Mobile, the patent was originally filed by the company back in February 2017. The patent involves an "electric pen device" with an "optical system including a lens and an image sensor", allowing a camera to be "controlled from the external electronic device."
The optical zoom functionality has always been considered as an obstacle for smartphone manufacturers because it brings an added thickness to the form factor of the handset.
Moving such technology to an external device such as Note Series S Pen will definitely gonna difficult for the company. Samsung could have made use of pinhole cameras and notch cutouts. If it is only going to be used as a selfie camera.
As you can see in Samsung's patent figure below the camera lens is fit into the upper chamber of the S Pen and a control key that could control the zooming feature.
“As Samsung prepares to expand the use of an S Pen, Samsung notes in this granted patent that slots may be provided in future notebooks and desktop displays to slip the S Pen into,” as per Patently Mobile.