Corephotonics, a provider of computational camera solutions based in Israel has launched a new dual-camera module for smartphones called Hawkeye. Hawkeye combines a standard 13MP camera module with a second 13MP module that uses proprietary folded optics. When the shutter button is pressed Corephotonics’ image fusion algorithm merges the two still images from both camera modules into into a single image, offering a zoom performance that is equivalent to a 5x optical zoom.

The company says the Hawkeye dual-camera zoom exceeds the digital zooming capabilities of a 130MP sensor and all existing dual-camera modules. Its folded optics translates to a height reduction of the module down to 5.4mm, allowing for the design of very thin devices. Optical image stabilization is also offered in both stills and video mode.

Along with Hawkeye, Corephotonics also introduced Slim Dual Camera which is focused on improving low light image quality, using a color image sensor in combination with a monochromatic sensor. The dual-13MP module puts out 21MP images and allows for slimmer designs than conventional setups. According to Corephotonics it delivers better resolution and lower noise levels than any current 21MP smartphone cameras.

A previously announced 3x zoom module and Slim Dual Camera are expected to be ready for use in devices in mid-2016. For the Hawkeye we'll have to wait until next year. It appears that many industry players are viewing computational imaging as the solution to the zoom and low light limitations of current smartphone cameras. Hopefully we'll get the chance to find out if they are right sometime later this year.