Apple says mounting iPhone on motorcycles can lead to camera damage

Apple is a tech giant, their iPhones are the best selling mobiles in the USA. Now, they have just issued a warning to the users who are mounting their iPhones on the motorcycles. The warning said that the camera of the iPhones can get damaged if the mobile phone is being mounted on the motorcycles.

Apple says mounting iPhone on motorcycles can lead to camera damage

“Exposing your iPhone to high amplitude vibrations within certain frequency ranges, specifically those generated by high-power motorcycle engines, can degrade the performance of the camera system. The OIS and closed-loop AF systems in iPhone are designed for durability. However, as is the case with many consumer electronics that include systems like OIS, long-term direct exposure to high-amplitude vibrations within certain frequency ranges may degrade the performance of these systems and lead to reduced image quality for photos and videos. It is recommended to avoid exposing your iPhone to extended high-amplitude vibrations” says Apple’s statement.

Many people use a phone mount for their mobile phones while riding. Because of the phone mount, they can use the mobile phone for navigation, check notifications or take calls. It is not only the iPhone whose camera module can get damaged because of the vibrations. Technically, it can be any mobile phone whose camera supports optical image stabilization or has a big sensor.

What happens in cameras with optical stabilization is that the camera module itself can move in all the axis for few millimetres. This helps in taking take blur-free shots and smooth videos without any shakes. OIS or Optical Image Stabilization uses a small gyroscope that can detect when the mobile phone is shaking and counter it.

Apple says mounting iPhone on motorcycles can lead to camera damage
Picture without and with OIS

Now, let’s understand what happens when we mount the mobile phone on a motorcycle. The vibrations from the engine can travel through the chassis to the handlebar and the handlebar is where the phone mount is mounted. These vibrations can cause the camera module to continuously move around in its place. In a long run, this can damage the camera module because the optical image stabilization system can break over time.

Also, now we have smartphones with massive camera sensors measuring from 48 megapixels, 64 megapixels to even 104 megapixels. These sensors are so massive that they can move inside their module. Some people can even hear the camera module shaking when they move the phone quite violently.

One way to reduce the vibrations from the engine is to use a phone mount that has thick rubber padding so that it can minimize vibrations from the engine and the phone should also be in a thick case that ensures that no vibrations are travelling to the mobile phone. However, these ways will not completely protect your phone. It is better that you do not use a mobile phone mount.

Many motorcycles now come with in-built navigation

Apple says mounting iPhone on motorcycles can lead to camera damage
Royal Enfield’s Tripper Module

Some manufacturers have now started offering some way of navigation with their motorcycles. Most of the manufacturers are using an application that can be connected to the instrument cluster. You enter the destination into the application and then the directions are displayed on the instrument cluster. Some electric scooters that have a large touchscreen are offering navigation maps in-built. Royal Enfield designed an all-new navigation module with Google. They named it Tripper and its job is to just display the navigation directions on its display. It has a small circular display that sits with the instrument cluster. Tripper Navigation is available with the Meteor 350, 2021 Classic 350 and Himalayan.

Paarth Khatri

Paarth's passion for cars started by collecting newspaper clippings when he was just a toddler. He is obsessed with cars and technology and can talk about them all day. He has an undying love for cars with a manual transmission and is always ready to drive anything with 2 or 4 wheels. Being an audiophile his dream car is Lexus LFA, considering it is the best sounding car ever made. He would happily burn the last gallon of petrol for a lap in the Ariel Atom 500. (Full bio)