By borrowing light-metering tech from DSLRs, Lomography’s Belair X 6-12 Jetsetter is the first medium-format camera capable of auto-exposing panoramic images. It also shoots 6x6, 6x9, and 6x12 film photos just as beautifully.
What’s Next: A camera you don’t have to focus
California’s Pelican Imaging recently developed a smartphone -prototype of an array camera—a grid of offset lenses. In this case, 16 of them in a four-by-four grid allow users to focus eight-megapixel pictures after the photo is taken.
The Hurdle: Building an array with the same high-quality optics and precision engineering used to make traditional lenses without inflating the size and weight.
When Will It Happen? We’ll see them in five years on smartphones and point-and-shoots, but it will be at least a decade before the technology is good enough to replace the lenses on DSLRs and cinematic cameras.