When Konica Minolta transferred its digital camera business to Sony in 2006, it was assumed that would be the end of the era for two of the once most recognizable camera companies. Today, Konica Minolta is better known for making copy machines and other industrial products. But according to the 4/3 Rumors site (via The Phoblographer), the company might be getting back into the camera biz with new lenses for the Micro Four-Thirds system.
Japanese website Egami found a Konica Minolta patent that shows an 8-17mm f/2.8 lens, and is the third after a 43mm f/1.4 and 12-42mm f/3.5-5.6. Egami describes the sensor as a Four-Thirds type, which would mount onto cameras from Panasonic and Olympus, as well as some Chinese brands that are purported to be making M4T cameras under the Polaroid and Kodak brands.
Although it no longer makes cameras, Konica Minolta is still in the optical business, creating products for projectors and digital camera lens units for other manufacturers. If the patents are legit, we could see the company camera heritage shine once more.
(Image via The Phoblographer)