Are the Pop-Up Cameras our Answer to Bezel-less Smartphones: My Opinions

We have come a long way from having a 0.3 MP camera to now having a beastly 50MP selfie camera on a smartphone. This leap has taken its time but, it has produced some good looking bezel-less phones as well. Big manufacturers like Samsung, OnePlus, Sony, Vivo, Oppo, etc., have housed higher MP camera sensors in their budget as well as premium smartphones. However, the use of Pop-up selfie camera was there for the time being but, came into popularity when Vivo on its concept phone NEX, used a pop-up camera to achieve the bezel-less design.

First, let us understand what is and how does a pop-up selfie camera work? The pop-up camera is a motorized mechanism that packs the selfie or more rarely the rear camera as well. We are very familiar with motorized parts on a smartphone, for instance, take the Nokia N series for example. But, are the pop-up motorized camera, our answer for achieving the bezel-less design? This question has popped up in my mind a hundred times and I am sure there are many people who have come across this question.

I have divided this article into the Pros and Cons list of the pop-up camera. Let us dive straight into the answers we are looking for;

Pros of the Pop-up/Motorized Camera

1. No Notch!

OnePlus 7 Pro No Notch

We are living in an era of smartphones where there are only two alternatives left to choose from. Either we go with the notch or the bezel-less phone. What this pop-up or the motorized camera has done is, they have eliminated the need of having that ugly notch in front of the smartphone screen. I am personally not a fan of the notched display because it distracts our viewing and gaming experience, kills the symmetry of the phone, and the list goes long. But, the pop-up camera gives us the beautiful all-screen displays which are nice to have on a smartphone in this new-tech era.

2. Minimum Bezels

OnePlus 7 Pro

With the pop-up cameras, the smartphones now have minimum bezels. As there is no notch or any camera or other modules housed on the front of the display, we get minimum bezels. This does quite look amazing and feels futuristic.

3. Better in Design than Notched Smartphones

Notch vs Notchless

The bezel-less displays look way better than the notched display on the smartphones. The OnePlus 7 Pro is a beast of a phone that looks good too. And, I would, in any case, accept a bezel-less smartphone over a notched one.

Cons of the Pop-up/Motorized Camera

1. Prone to Damage

Is it damage proof

Believe it or not, these small motorized pop-up cameras are prone to damage. They are more exposed to damage than the actual phone itself. You can dismiss the fact that these motorized part of the smartphones are fragile even if the company claims to lift 22kilos of weight with it. They are housed in the smartphone with screws and bolts and we cannot blame the parts for this but the overall design needs a shift to something more rigid and tough.

2. Accumulate Dust

Oppo Find X
Source: AndroidPit

Now, do you really want your beautiful smartphone like in the above image to accumulate dust and get scratched? The Pop-up camera or any motorized parts of a smartphone for this case is a welcoming hand for dust particles. We can see dust particles getting accumulated at the bottom of our phone near the speakers and the charging port. The same is the case with motorized parts, as they need to come up and the go down for every action that we want to take with it. The dust particles can get accumulated inside the hollow of the pop-up camera and may even result is scratches or dis-functioning of the pop-up camera.

3. Water Resistant

Samsung A80

This is one of the main cons of the pop-up camera. When the smartphone uses any pop-up or motorized mechanism or part, it loses the water-resistant functionality. Though, OnePlus 7 Pro has rubberized protection on the pop-up camera but, it is not officially declared as water resistant. Moreover, you cannot be sure of its durability in water because any mechanical part is prone to water damage. But, if there is some advanced method to solve this issue then, it is a good way to house the camera. Till now, it seems a distant future.

4. Mechanical Work

Teardown of OnePlus 7 Pro
Source: JerryRigEverything/YouTube

Since these parts are not packed inside the smartphone, they are embedded in the circuit with a mechanical part or hinge. This is the sole reason why they are not mechanically sturdy. In one teardown video of the OnePlus 7 Pro by JerryRigEverything, we can see that how the company has placed the motorized camera and the bolts are also very fragile. Though the companies with such motorized parts in their smartphones claim to be able to withstand millions of operations, the fact is they are mechanical parts and are bound to dis-function.


There you have it from my side, in this article. In my opinion, till the companies don’t come up with solving all the cons of the pop-up/motorized parts in a phone, I will keep myself away from the smartphones that feature motorized parts. Moreover, there were plenty of rumors that manufacturers are looking to house the front camera underneath the display. Now, that is something I would love to have on my smartphone. Because, that will just take away my fears of the fragile, prone to damage and dust motorized part.

Though this seems a far from the truth, you cannot neglect the fact that in today’s technological world anything is possible because, once upon a time, in-display fingerprint scanners were also considered far from reality. Let us know in the comments below about your views on using motorized parts on a smartphone.

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