Sony trumps Samsung, launches first 1-inch camera sensor for phones

While Samsung has been the first brand to cross 100MP and 200MP barriers in the smartphone camera segment, Sony has trumped its South Korean rival by developing a 1-inch sensor. The Japanese firm will be the first to launch a 1-inch smartphone camera sensor, the IMX989.

Tea Sony IMX989 1-inch camera sensor will debut with the Xiaomi 12S Ultra. The device will be launched alongside the Xiaomi 12S and the Xiaomi 12S Pro on July 4, 2022. It is a 50MP camera sensor, and its native pixel size will be around 1.5µm, which should theoretically offer excellent performance in low-light conditions.

While some Sony phones already use 1-inch sensors, they are all cropped versions of sensors used in Sony’s digital cameras. The IMX989 is the first 1-inch sensor explicitly made for smartphones. Sony is also rumored to be working on a 100MP mid-range camera sensor.

Samsung’s biggest sensor is the ISOCELL GN2. It has an optical format of 1/1.12-inch and a native pixel size of 1.4µm. Despite the ISOCELL GN2 being the best ISOCELL sensor, the Galaxy S23 Ultra is rumored to use the ISOCELL HP1. It is a 200MP camera sensor with an optical format of 1/1.22-inch and 0.64μm native pixel size.

Sony’s new IMX989 camera sensor should offer much better image and video quality than Samsung’s 200MP camera sensor. However, a lot also depends on image processing algorithms. So, only time will tell if Samsung’s upcoming flagship phone can match the camera performance of the Xiaomi 12S Ultra.

Xiaomi 12S Sony IMX989 1-Inch Camera Sensor Size Comparison

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