Xiaomi Could Use First-Ever 108MP Camera on a Smartphone, Courtesy of Samsung

Aug 9
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Xiaomi made two important announcements during its ‘Images of the Future conference’ today. The company is going to use two of Samsung’s image sensors in its upcoming phones, the earlier announced ISOCELL GW1 64MP sensor and a new one which is really going to push the envelope, but doesn’t come as a surprise, seeing as how a tipster also talked about companies releasing devices touting 108MP cameras from next year.

Redmi 8 Is Expected To Ship With The 64MP Sensor Later This Year In Select Markets

The aforementioned 64MP unit will be seen in a Redmi phone. The 1/1.7-inch CMOS sensor is expected to have a pixel size of 0.8μm and use the tetracell technology to group four pixels together to crank out high-quality 16MP images in low-light conditions. When lighting isn’t a problem, the sensor will produce detailed 64MP images. For the uninitiated, 64MP is the highest resolution mobile sensor available right now. The Redmi model touting this sensor, possibly the Redmi 8, might go on sale in China and India towards the end of the year.

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However, that record will be soon broken by another Samsung sensor, as the South Korean giant and Xiaomi have also a 108MP camera that will be able to offer images with a phenomenal 12032 by 9024 resolution. This ISOCELL sensor will also most likely use pixel binning technology to spit out 27MP photos in the dimply lit environments. We can expect the Mi MIX 4 to ship with this hardware. The phone will presumably be underpinned by the Snapdragon 855 chipset and sport a QHD+ display with an embedded fingerprint reader.

More Pixels Might Not Necessarily Mean Better Pictures

Going by the numbers, you might assume that the 64MP and 108MP cameras are high profile sensors, but the word on the street is that they are mid-range sensors. This means they will most likely be seen on less expensive phones. Compared to the supposed 0.8µm pixels of the 108MP unit, sensors on flagship phones such as the iPhone XS and Pixel 3 usually feature bigger pixels to capture more light and cut down on noise.

Also, while pixel wars may sound exciting, camera vendors might actually be going for overkill with these sensors. For a little refresher, image quality depends in part on sensor size, and since smartphones have to stay with a certain size, there are never going to be as good as professional cameras, a statement repeated by Zeiss CEO. Thus, perhaps it might be a better idea to adopt the same route as Google and work on the software to improve the quality of images. That being said, it will be pretty interesting to see what wonders the mighty 108MP camera can pull off.

Source: Twitter (Manu Kumar Jain)

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