I’ll be honest. Sliding cameras are a no-go for me. Here’s why I hate them. Their biggest justification is that sliding cameras create a bezel-less experience, and I honestly don’t have a problem with bezels. A small Samsung S9-style brow and a chin look perfectly fine on a smartphone (I say this as a consumer, not as a design journalist). The other things I hate about sliding cameras are that they catch dust, their presence prevents the phone from being waterproof, and you can’t really put a proper case on them. They also make phones marginally thicker, and a slight problem here or there (a bend perhaps) will render the sliding mechanism useless, basically leaving you with no camera, which isn’t ideal, right?
So what’s the solution? I Nung Huang has one that involves a detachable camera module and a proprietary contact-pin setup that allows you to snap the module to your phone, like the Essential Phone, or Motorola’s Moto Mods. The phone and module are both water-right and dust-resistant, so problem solved there. Looks like the only other foreseeable problem is accidentally losing or dropping the camera mod (like one would with an Airpod), but Huang’s nifty swivel case solves that problem, while also allowing you to use the camera in any orientation (thanks to circuitry within the case itself). What’s better is that this phone is now A. completely bezel-less on the front, and B. more secure, thanks to the removable camera. You know what? Removing the camera may do wonders for your battery life too!
Designer: I-Nung Huang