Samsung bets on its new ISOCELL image sensor for premium smartphone cameras


Samsung said on Tuesday it thinks it has a smartphone camera sensor that will produce better color images in general but particularly so in low-light conditions. The new technology is called ISOCELL and the name actually describes how the sensor works: It can isolate the light coming into each individual pixel.

“ISOCELL technology forms a physical barrier between neighboring pixels – isolating the pixel. This isolation enables more photons to be collected from the micro-lens and absorbed into the correct pixel’s photodiode minimizing undesired electrical crosstalk between pixels and allowing expanded full well capacity (FWC).”

How can that pixel isolation improve photos? Samsung says the crosstalk between pixels is reduced by 30 percent, which translates into a 30 percent greater dynamic range in colors. The sensor is also backside illuminated, which helps gather more light in less than optimal conditions.

The company hasn’t provided any image samples to show the output from its ISOCELL image sensor but we shouldn’t have to wait long to see them. Samsung says handset makers are testing out the sensors now and it expects to begin mass production of them before year-end. That means January’s Consumer Electronics Show is a likely place to see smartphones and tablets debut with the technology.

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