Take super selfies with a new wide-angle panoramic lens for smartphone cameras


If you’ve ever taken a selfie — and admit it, you have — you know that the struggle to get a high-quality shot.

It takes skill to angle your smartphone properly and position the participants just right to achieve the desired result: a fun photo that will get tons of likes on your social network of choice. What would make the art of taking a selfie easier to master? A tiny wide-angle lens, according to one company.

Montreal’s ImmerVision recently announced a new 3.8-millimeter patented wide-angle panoramic lens designed to be integrated into smartphones and wearable devices. These tiny panomorph lenses, which the company invented and licenses to global lens producers, let shooters capture distortion-free photos with a panoramic view (360 degrees × 182 degrees) without any need for fully extending your arm or taking multiple shots and waiting for your phone to stitch them together.

“If Ellen DeGeneres had a phone with this technology, her famous Oscars selfie would have captured a much wider, clearer, and more natural shot — without any distortion or need to extend the mobile phone more than a few inches from her body,” according to Pascale Nini, president and CEO of ImmerVision. She adds that this type of lens can improve non-selfie forms of visual communications (e.g., video chats).

Manufacturing has begun, with South Korean lens and module maker Kolen recently signing on to be the first company to license ImmerVision’s new lens. Kolen plans to make the lens available by the end of the summer.

Selfies are having a moment right now: “Selife” was dubbed the word of the year in 2013, one was recently taken in space, and a TV show even has the word “selfie” in its name. On top of that, smartphones and smartwatches are being touted for their selfie-friendly features. Let’s just hope this doesn’t lead to more examples of the selfie stupidity recently exhibited at the Tour de France.