Sony Unveils 48-Megapixel Smartphone Camera Sensor

Posted July 25, 2018

'The new Sony sensor features 48 effective megapixels, *2 a pixel count which rivals that of high-performance SLR cameras, making it possible to capture handsome, high-resolution images even with a smartphone'. This is largely thanks to the ultra-compact pixel size of just 0.8μm, the smallest in any image sensor to date.

In addition to these advantages, original Sony exposure control technology and signal processing functionality are built into the image sensor, enabling real-time output and a superior dynamic range four times greater than conventional units. The Quad Bayer array enables both high sensitivity and high resolution By adopting the Quad Bayer color filter array, where the adjacent 2x2 pixels come in the same color, the new sensor delivers both high sensitivity and high resolution.

Smartphone cameras are about to get pretty insane.

Sony releases a new phone with a better, more clear camera. In darker scenes, the data from the sensor simply isn't converted, resulting in a 12-MP effective sensor that Sony says has the light-gathering power of 1.6-µm sensor wells.

Sony IMX586 will cram 48 megapixels into smartphone cameras
48MP Sony IMX586 imaging sensor announced, samples ship September

While the sensor could theoretically make an appearance in a future iPhone, it's more likely to pop up in Sony's own handsets, although we don't yet know when that might happen. The idea is that you can crop the sensor, taking a zoomed image but still have the resolution to provide the detail.

The IMX586 sensor has dethroned the Nokia Lumia 1020's 41MP camera, which in itself beat the Huawei P20 Pro's 40MP sensor earlier this year.

As for video, the sensor is able to capture 4K video at 90 frames per second, while 1080p and 720p resolutions can hit 240 and 480 frames per second, respectively.

The company has confirmed that the sample shipments will begin from September, and the price of IMX586 CMOS image sensor will be JPY 3,000 (roughly Rs. 1,800) excluding additional taxes that vary with each country.