The latest volley in the raging battle against phone bezels has Huawei recycling an old design that might be more relevant now than it was back in 2015. 

The Chinese tech giant has filed two patents in Europe, as spotted by LetsGoDigital, that both have a similar camera setup. The first one has a back lens that flips up 180 degrees to face the front, serving as a selfie camera. 

One camera, two purposes. (Picture: Huawei/European Union Intellectual Property Office)

The second design is almost identical, except the dual back cameras are aligned horizontally, allowing both to rotate over to the front.

The rear camera is also the front camera. (Picture: Huawei/European Union Intellectual Property Office)

Phone makers have been experimenting with different ways to maximize screen space. One barrier to that goal is the front camera, which has become indispensable in the age of selfies. That’s left phonemakers grappling with the question of where to put the selfie cam besides the top bezel.

There are no shortage of inventive ideas from China. Some have tried to hide the camera inside the body of the phone, having it pop up as needed. Others are hiding it under the screen.

Huawei’s latest patents seem to be another effort toward the same goal. But the design isn’t actually new.

Huawei’s budget sub-brand Honor released a phone in 2015 that also came with a flip-up back camera. And two years before that, Oppo introduced what it called the world’s first rotating camera on the N1 phone. 

More recently, Asus launched the ZenFone 6 with a flip-up camera that looks similar to Huawei’s patented design. Also released this year, Samsung’s Galaxy A80 has a camera module that slides up from the back and rotates between front and back.

The Samsung Galaxy A80 has a camera that automatically flips between front and back. (Picture: Samsung)