How Dual Camera Works Actually In Mobile

how dual camera works

Dual camera, a trending name in the smartphone era. Whenever we saw specification of a smartphone, may be the first thing we analyse what is the camera. Well, single or dual camera technology. Some of us may using dual camera phone also. But do you know how dual camera works?

Don’t worry, most people have not idea about it.

Well, you may say why I need to know the dual camera technology? Curiosity is a good thing. To have more knowledge is not bad. As we are using this technology in our daily life, why not know more about it.

The revolutionary dual camera technology takes smartphone photography to next level.

It seems that all the dual camera technology is the same. No, there is some difference. It may differ from phone to phone and manufacturer to manufacturer.

Let’s take a close look at the technology and find out how dual camera works in mobile.

How dual camera works in mobile

As I mentioned earlier, every dual camera technology is different. Before asking the query how dual camera works, know the which type of camera is it?

Don’t worry I will describe each type of dual camera technology.

The depth sensor

Let’s start with the most basic form of dual camera system i.e. the depth sensor.

In this system, the primary camera is accompanied by a second camera. The second camera’s only function is to make a 3D map the area in front of the camera.

You may compare the dual camera technology with our eye. We are able to see the world in 3D because we have two eyes with slightly different perspectives. So it provides us convey depth, especially for things that are close to us.

After creating a 3D map, now the system tell roughly how far the objects in front of the camera are with respect to each other.

Now the system can easily analyze the information and then it can separate the foreground subject from the background.

This technique is ideal to create a shallow depth of field effect. You may have used DSLR camera and have noticed the effect clearly.

But Smartphone camera lens and the sensor is not big as DSLR. So it can’t analyze the depth more accurately and first figure out the borders of the foreground subject. Then it applies an iris blur effect on everything else on the frame. This gives the illusion of shallow depth of field.

Depth sensor is one of the rarest types of dual camera systems. The first popular use of it was seen on the HTC One m8.

Basic smartphone cameras using this feature to create a blur effect on everything in the background.

The monochrome camera

A quite more popular implementation of the secondary sensor is the monochrome camera. In this method, both the primary and secondary camera is almost the same.

Both cameras usually have identical sensors, apertures, lenses and focusing systems. The only difference between the two is that the second sensor has no RGB color filter. As the name suggests, the monochrome sensor takes black and white photos, while the RGB sensor takes color photos.

This means that the sensor cannot capture color information but on the upside, because there is one less thing blocking the sensor. This type of monochrome camera can capture more light.

Whenever you take a picture, the camera system combines both the camera’s output and layering them into one image. The combination of two images will have greater detail and maybe lack of color information.

Huawei P9 and a few other uses this system.

The wide-angle camera

This type of camera first came in first on the LG G5. This is the more advanced dual camera system. As the name suggests you take wider photos. The lenses provide you with a wider field of view than a normal lens.

Take LG G5 as an example. It had a 16 megapixel, 29mm equivalent f1.8 primary camera and 8 megapixels, 12mm equivalent f2.4 secondary camera. The 12mm focal length camera gives a wide field to capture the image. As a result, you can take wider images on it.

The telephoto camera

It is the most commonly used dual camera technology. iPhone 7 came with this camera.

In this type of dual camera, the primary camera is paired with a second camera. The secondary camera has a telephoto lens.

As you can tell this system as the exact opposite of the wide-angle camera system. I this system the secondary lens has twice the focal length of the primary lens. It gives you an instant 2x optical zoom support.

The telephoto camera gives you 2x optical zoom without losing quality. It gives much better results. Most manufacturers go one step ahead and also implement the background blur effect to the telephoto camera.

The combination of the two best technology, a telephoto lens, and background blur gives superior photos.

Dual camera vs single camera what is the best?

It is not a comparison table between dual camera vs a single camera. I am just providing some clarification.

There is no second opinion that dual camera can take more depth photos than a single camera. I think you may not have any doubt after reading how the dual camera works.

Why not. Dual camera technology is specially designed for giving best photo quality.

This does not mean every dual camera smartphone provides the best picture quality. Sometimes manufacturers use lower quality lenses and sensors. So obviously this will give poor image quality.

There may a huge cost difference between the single lens and double lens smartphone.

If you have a single camera phone then it’s ok. It is not required to skip to dual camera phone immediately.


After a long discussion on how dual camera works in mobile, we are in conclusion. Dual camera smartphones are creating sensations. Some people blindly purchasing smartphones without analyzing the dual camera.

Nowadays midrange smartphones also come with dual camera. Before going to buy any smartphone to analyze which dual camera technology is used in it. Do the price of the phone justify the technology used in it?

I think now you may have clear clarity how dual camera works. Have you get some knowledge from this article. Comment be bellow and let me know.



  1. Hi Bibhu,
    This is really a bit informative article and also bit more complex for mass of the readers. But really a nice post..thanks for sharing.


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