Smartphone Camera Sensors Rise: Insiders Tease Game-Changing Sensor

Micro four thirds vs 1-inch sensor

Smartphone Camera Sensors Rise

Renowned tech leaker Digital Chat Station recently made some intriguing revelations about the future of smartphone camera sensors. Initially, there were speculations about smartphone manufacturers venturing into Micro Four Thirds (M43) format sensors to potentially disrupt the lightweight camera market.

However, today he posted that “the M43 format sensor will not land in a short time, the 1.33-inch size is still too big for cell phones. From the current stage of the project information, the next generation of the mega-cup main camera is still 1-inch level (expected for Xiaomi 14 Ultra), but with the enhanced version of 1-inch, the next generation expected for Xiaomi 15 Ultra should have a bigger breakthrough.”

While initial reports suggested that smartphone manufacturers were actively researching M43 format sensors, Digital Chat Station’s latest update indicates a delay in their implementation. The primary reason cited for the delay is the size constraint. M43 sensors, which are larger than the 1-inch sensors, pose challenges in terms of fitting them into the compact form factor of smartphones. As a result, smartphone makers are currently prioritizing advancements in the 1-inch CMOS sensors, while the Xiaomi 15 Ultra is expected to feature an M43 format sensor, showcasing significant improvements in smartphone photography.

Another source mentioned the possibility of a new Sony IMX4xx sensor, potentially named IMX479, specifically designed for the Micro Four Thirds format. This sensor is said to offer an impressive 40 megapixels resolution and may require the utilization of nano aspherical lenses, specifically the 9P from Leica, to minimize camera bumps. Although the specific timeline for the release of this M43 sensor remains uncertain, it indicates that smartphone manufacturers are indeed exploring the potential of larger sensors for improved imaging capabilities.

The Xiaomi 12S Ultra, which debuted in July 2022, was among the first smartphones to showcase the capabilities of the 1-inch IMX989 sensor. This sensor is now available for other manufacturers to utilize, and it is anticipated that high-end flagship smartphones will continue to rely on 1-inch CMOS sensors in the coming years.

Source 1, Source 2

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