Components > Handset Components Blog

Samsung Introduces New 108MP, 64MP, 48MP and 32MP Image Sensors with 0.7µm Pixel Size for Smartphones

by Jeffrey Mathews | Sep 15, 2020

The smartphone industry has been witnessing constant innovation in terms of product offerings focused on the imaging capabilities of the device. This is purely driven by the latest innovation from the component suppliers. Image sensors have seen strong demand as suppliers have made significant strides in offering new and advanced possibilities.

Today, Samsung announced the expansion of its image sensor line-up with the introduction of four new image sensors, 108MP ISOCELL HM2, 64MP ISOCELL GW3, 48MP ISOCELL GM5 and 32MP ISOCELL JD1. These image sensors are based on 0.7µm pixel size.

The new line-up of image sensors from Samsung System LSI is aimed at reducing the image sensor package and making it 15 percent smaller compared to the previous generation of 0.8µm image sensors. Moreover, the sensor continues to retain the high-resolution capabilities with advanced ISOCELL Plus technology, optimized in a smaller profile. Samsung has also introduced the ISOCELL 2.0, which is an advanced pixel technology to offer excellent performance with improved light sensitivity factor.

0.7micron samsung

Image Source: Samsung

 

Key features

  • ISOCELL HM2 is a 108MP image sensor with a large optical format of 1/1.52" and a pixel size of 0.7μm. The image sensor succeeds the ISOCELL HMX and HM1 and offers a small footprint high-resolution sensor. The sensor uses a 9-to-1 pixel binning mechanism (Nonacell) in a 3x3 color filter array. The sensor supports Super PD with improved autofocus capabilities, supports 8K resolution videos at 24fps The HM2 sensor continues to support 3x lossless zoom images of the subject along with preserving the details.
  • ISOCELL GW3 is a 64MP image sensor with an optical format of 1/1.97" and a pixel size of 0.7μm. The image sensor is the latest upgrade to the previous ISOCELL GW1 and GW2, providing detailed images with improved clarity and high-resolution capability. The sensor uses Samsung’s Tetracell technology for 4-to-1 pixel binning in a 2x2 color filter array. The sensor supports Super PD and is capable of 4K 60pfs video capture. The sensor also improves the capture quality in low-lit conditions.
  • ISOCELL GM5 is a 48MP image sensor having an optical format of 1/2.55" with a pixel pitch of 0.7µm. The image sensor is specifically designed for ultra-wide and telephoto applications in the multi-camera configuration in smartphones.The sensor uses the new ISOCELL 2.0 pixel technology to enhance the light sensitivity factor, especially during zooming scenarios to enable superior detailed captures. The sensor is based on Samsung’s Tetracell technology, supporting 4K captures in both ultra-wide and zoom modes. It also supports staggered HDR for providing vivid images.
  • ISOCELL JD1 is a 32MP image sensor having a sensor size of 1/3.14" and a pixel size of 0.7µm. The image sensor is adapted for selfie camera applications, driving more color and details for a selfie camera image. The sensor uses 4 in 1 pixel binning based on Tetracell technology. The compact design of the sensor enables a smaller footprint for today’s smartphone hole-punch camera cut-out. The sensor supports Super PD, Staggered HDR and FHD video recording at 120fps with 75% FoV.

 

Outlook

Samsung’s momentum towards its image sensor line-up has been growing steadily since last year and the vendor came second in the image sensor market in CY2019. The company led the MP race with the introduction of higher MP image sensors for the smartphone customers in 2019 and is still continuing the feat in CY 2020. The vendor captured nearly 30 percent share in the smartphone image sensor market in Q2 2020.

Samsung’s new image sensor products are aimed to drive High MP image sensor adoption among mid-tier devices to flagship devices. These sensors are aimed at smartphones with sleeker designs but also provide the imaging capabilities of a large image sensor.  Today smartphones are seeing an increase in components due to 5G. This reduces the PCB footprint and in some cases, smartphone OEMs have to sacrifice battery capacity to accommodate all the modules.

Samsung is expected to offer the latest 0.7µm sensors to its customers. We expect these image sensors to feature among the latest smartphones that are set to be launched in H2 2020. The key players expected to drive the adoption of these image sensors are Xiaomi, Realme, Oppo and Vivo, and also Samsung Mobile.  Samsung’s ISOCELL HM2, ISOCELL GW3, and ISOCELL JD1 are already in the manufacturing phase and could be seen in devices launching in Q3 2020 whereas ISOCELL GM5 is being sampled to customers. We expect to see an increase in the adoption of Higher MP sensors being featured for multi-camera configurations.

Key Questions

  • The vendor’s latest generation sensors focus on reducing the pixel size and the sensor size. This is expected to affect the light sensitivity factor while capturing the images. How is Samsung overcoming these challenges to deliver high resolution and detailed images? What is the difference in picture quality compared to the vendor’s previous generation 0.8µm image sensors?
  • The vendor’s competitors namely Sony and OmniVision are continuing to focus on larger pixel sizes and increasing the sensor’s frame. Considering such different approaches, what are the key requirements from the smartphone OEMs? Which image sensor vendor would benefit in terms of its technology implementation?

 

Previous Post: ARM-NVIDIA: Co-opetition is the way to go? | Next Post: The World’s First 64MP Image Sensor with a Pixel Size of 1.0 Micron for Smartphones Introduced by OmniVision

Let's talk

Now you know a little about us, get in touch and tell us what your business problem is.
Name:
Email:
Telephone:
Country:
Inquiry / Message: