Canon Files Patent in Japan for Lens with Touchpad Instead of a Focus Ring


New gear is always fun, but trawling through patent filings gives us a glimpse of where the industry is heading in terms of innovations.

Image by ShareGrid

One of Canon’s recent filings in Japan could be a quite radical innovation indeed as the company submitted paperwork for a lens that replaces the focus ring with a touchpad.

As PetaPixel reports, the patent filing describes a lens with a touchpad that is sensitive to clockwise and counterclockwise. The patent further specifies the speed at which the lens operates being linked to the speed at which the user moves their fingers on the touchpad.

That all sounds well and good, but also quite familiar. If you’re thinking of the EOS R and its Touch Bar, you’re not the only one. Let’s just say that was received to somewhat mixed reviews. While any paradigm change is bound to be met with a bit of skepticism, there’s also the argument about not fixing something that isn’t broken. Innovations not only have to offer a better way, but they have to be demonstrably and reliably so. It doesn’t seem like touch technology is quite there yet.

Some of the other innovations from Canon that we’ve covered recently include their new mixed reality headset, an AI-powered camera, and the PHIL photo culling app. You can check those out at the underlined links in the preceding sentence.

What do you think of Canon’s idea of replacing a focus ring with a touchpad? Let us know your thoughts on this latest brain wave in the comments below.

Be sure to check out some of our other photography news on Light Stalking at this link right here.


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Kehl is our staff photography news writer since 2017 and has over a decade of experience in online media and publishing and you can get to know him better here and follow him on Insta.

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