Xiaomi x Leica Optical Institute Founded

Xiaomi x Leica Optical Institute Founded to Revolutionize Mobile Photography

Beijing, China – In a move that promises to significantly impact the future of mobile imaging, Xiaomi and Leica Camera AG announced the establishment of the Xiaomi x Leica Optical Institute. Marking a significant milestone for the smartphone industry, this institute unites expertise in optical technology, digital imaging, and AI to drive groundbreaking advancements.

Building on their existing collaboration, the institute aims to set a new global standard for mobile device optical performance. This initiative focuses on three pillars: technology, user experience, and philosophy, pushing the boundaries of mobile photography. The upcoming flagship model, Xiaomi 14 Ultra, slated for release this month, will be the first tangible outcome of this collaboration, showcasing unparalleled optical performance.

The institute prioritizes continuous innovation in mobile imaging optics, aiming to create the most advanced mobile imaging system yet. By leveraging the strengths of both companies, they will focus on four key areas:

  • Ultra-precise, compact lenses: Designing high-quality optics that fit within a smartphone form factor.
  • Computational photography excellence: Optimizing software algorithms to enhance image quality.
  • Strict optical standards: Maintaining the highest standards for lens quality and performance.
  • Cutting-edge optoelectronic technology: Researching and developing new technologies to push the boundaries of mobile imaging.

This ambitious endeavor is backed by significant resources. A dedicated team of over 200 experts has been assembled, including renowned optical designer Peter Karbe (Leica) and industry leaders from Xiaomi such as Zeng Xuezong (Director), Yi Yan (Deputy Director), and Wang Xuanran (Deputy Director).

Xiaomi further contributes robust R&D support with plans for three state-of-the-art laboratories in Beijing, focusing on camera hardware, imaging, and image quality evaluation. These facilities are expected to be among the largest and most automated camera labs globally.

William Lu, Partner and President of Xiaomi Group, stated: “Leica’s extensive experience in optical engineering and exquisite craftsmanship, combined with Xiaomi’s dedication to ‘giving reality a sense of depth,’ create the perfect synergy to drive advancements in mobile imaging. Through the Xiaomi x Leica Optical Institute, we will push the boundaries of this technology and lead the way in the mobile imaging era.”

Matthias Harsch, CEO of Leica Camera AG, commented: “Our collaboration with Xiaomi has already yielded remarkable results by integrating the iconic Leica experience into mobile photography. The Xiaomi 14 Ultra exemplifies this progress and will set a new benchmark for mobile optical imaging. The establishment of this institute further strengthens our partnership, bringing together leading experts to define the future of mobile imaging.”

With this significant collaboration, the future of mobile photography is poised for exciting advancements. The Xiaomi x Leica Optical Institute marks a turning point, promising to revolutionize how we capture and experience our world through smartphones.


Tech Editor, gear head , photographer, videographer, editor and all around lover of technology.

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