Micron Technology has released a quarter-inch 2.2 megapixel sensor to mobile phone manufacturers. The new sensor has both a Mobile Industry Processor Interface (MIPI) standards serial interface and a parallel interface which give phone makers flexibility with traditional designs and future models that require high bandwidth. Pictures of up to 1600 by 1200 pixels can be taken, while videos of up to 15 frames per second can be recorded at maximum resolution.
As phones have become smaller and more powerful, camera interfaces had to become faster and smaller. Late last year, several phone manufacturers agreed on the MIPI serial interface standard which uses a small number of pins that transmit up to four gigabits per second. Micron's sensor is only a quarter of a wide and has a built-in image processor that handles color correction and also auto-focusing.
While two megapixels sounds good, Micron faces an uphill battle with Samsung. In November of last year, Samsung's President Lee Ki-tae demonstrated the company's SPH-V8200 eight megapixel phone in a private meeting with technology analysts. In addition, Korean residents can already buy a five megapixel phone, like the SPH-V7800.
Micron releases high-res CMOS image sensors for cellphones