The Japanese blog An Image on a Sensor points to a new Canon patent for a small-but-sharp wide angle zoom ranging from 15mm at f/4.5 to a wide end of 45mm at f/8. In the design objectives stated in the filing – a nice feature of most Japanese patents often lacking in those of other countries – it mentions needing a small lens, yet one that is capable of handling sensors that in the future may have higher resolution. Which, of course, is more interesting than the lens.
One of the embodiments of the patent is a fixed-lens security camera. Others involve the potential as a removable lens for a full frame system.
Another stated desire for the design is to minimize aberrations, but the theoretical aberration graphs published show it doing only an adequate job of this, in keeping with its relatively dark maximum aperture. It appears to be a relatively cheap wide zoom, but one that would keep up with improved sensor resolution in the future, perhaps in a similar class as the oddly-cheap super telephotos Canon released last year.