Why does the Amazon Fire phone have six cameras?
If there's one thing the Amazon Fire phone has more of than any other smartphone out there, it's cameras. Not only does it have the well-established rear snapper and the front-facing camera so beloved of selfie-takers, it also has an extra four cameras dotted in its corners.
What's all that about, we hear you ask. It's all down to a cool feature known as Dynamic Perspective, which lends a 3D effect to the screen and lets you tilt the phone to control it and look around corners in games and the like. Join the O2 Gurus as we delve deeper into the tech behind it:
Where's your head at?
The four cameras on each corner of the device work with the main front-facing camera to find your eyes so it knows where you're looking in relation to the phone; it then uses a process known as 'stereovision' to extract 3D information from you and your surroundings. The traditional front-mounted camera alone couldn't take in enough information for the feature to work, so Amazon added four more (although it just uses the two best cameras at any given time).
It even works in pitch-darkness
The cameras update 60 times a second, so the Dynamic Perspective features work even as you naturally move. Each of the cameras is super low-powered and has its own infrared light so they even work in the dark.
It makes maps a lot more impressive
So what can Dynamic Perspective actually do? Imagine you're looking at a map on your phone; you'll be able to tell which the taller buildings are, and peer around them if they're blocking your view. Landmarks like the Statue of Liberty pop out of the screen and let you examine them in better detail. Plus, if you're looking for a restaurant or information about your surroundings, you can just tilt the phone to overlay Yelp ratings on the map.
Amazon thinks it's kind of a big deal
When Amazon's CEO Jeff Bezos took to the stage to unveil the Fire phone, he compared the advent of Dynamic Perspective on smartphones to the move from flat paintings to works with geometric perspective way back in the 14th century.
It's going to make more apps more exciting
The code for Dynamic Perspective is available to app developers so they can incorporate it into their apps. This is particularly good news for game makers; we've already seen some use the feature to let you look around corners during game play or twist and turn a 3D-effect Rubik's Cube to solve it. Things can only get more impressive from here on out!
If you're not sure about any techy terms, check out our jargon buster