Samsung is working on a new Android smartphone that's equipped with a quadruple-camera setup on the back and is planned to be released later this year, known China-based industry insider known only by their social media handle "Ice Universe" said earlier today. The source close to a number of Samsung's component suppliers specifically stated the handset in question is not the Galaxy S10 or the firm's foldable Galaxy F, having already implied as much by asserting the product will be commercialized this year instead of 2019.
The presence of four rear cameras would suggest the said device is a high-end offering with a premium price tag given how such an imaging system would likely raise its manufacturing costs by a significant degree, hence not being an ideal option for the mid-range category that already comes with thin profit margins attached to it due to aggressive global competition. Based on that assumption, the insider was most likely referring to the W2019, the only remaining unannounced flagship Samsung is expected to release this year. The successor to the W2018 should once again launch in the form of a traditional flip phone and be a China exclusive which continues Samsung's history of experimentation. Last year's W2018 debuted the variable-aperture camera Samsung ended up implementing into the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy Note 9 lineups but even if the W2019 was to use a quadruple-lens system, such a solution is unlikely to be added to the company's mainstream product lines meant to be released next year.
Imaging systems with three and more cameras are widely expected to be the next major trend in the smartphone industry. Besides allowing manufacturers to deliver better mobile photography experiences without making thicker handsets, such systems are also being heavily pushed by component manufacturers threatened by the stagnation of global smartphone shipments. By popularizing triple- and quadruple-camera setups, sensor and lens producers can continue growing their businesses even as consumers are buying fewer handsets on an annual basis. This year's LG V40 is rumored to feature a triple-camera setup, much like the upcoming Huawei Mate 20 Pro. At least one member of Samsung's Galaxy S10 series set to launch in early 2019 should feature three rear cameras as well, according to recent reports.