Samsung unveils smaller, more affordable 108-megapixel image sensor for smartphones

Yolanda Curtis
September 15, 2020

Samsung also mentions that it plans to bring the ultra-high-resolution camera sensors to mainstream smartphones, which means we can see 64MP or even 108MP cameras on non-flagship phones in the near future. The HM2 features Super PD, a faster and more effective phase detecting auto focus solution, and much like the HM1, it comes with the nine-pixel binning technology and 3x lossless zoom. Thanks to the use of smaller pixels, the new sensor is nearly identical in size to Samsung's 48MP 0.8μm module. The Korean company says the new tech should improve light sensitivity by up to 12% compared to the Isocell Plus tech now used on its sensors. The new sensor is 15 percent smaller than the 0.8μm-based predecessors and reduces the height of the camera module by 10 percent.

The company says that the newest image sensors are up to 15-percent smaller than the 0.8μm sensors of the same resolution and reduce the height of the camera module by up to 10 percent. The 108MP ISOCELL HM2, the 64MP ISOCELL GW3 and the 32MP ISOCELL JD1 camera sensors have already entered mass production, while the 48MP ISOCELL GM5 is now in the sampling process.

The HM2 is Samsung's third 108Mp image sensor after the HMX and HM1. This will help OEMs to make newer cameras better and stiff into compact devices with smaller camera bumps.

ISOCELL GW3 is a 64MP-image sensor optimized for mainstream devices. However, reducing the pixel size by too much can potentially result in blurry images. It uses Tetracell and Smart-ISO technologies to ensure color accuracy and image brightness. Samsung is the world's second largest supplier of mobile image sensors after Sony. When used in conjunction with the 5x optical zoom, the GM5 takes full advantage of the 0.7μm pixel size and minimizes camera bulge.

It is a 48MP image sensor designed for use in telescoping or ultra-wide-angle cameras. GM5 supports high-speed Full-HD recording at 480 fps, improved HDR technology based on Tetracell (due to the operation of some of the sensors in high sensitivity mode, and some of them - reduced).

The first three will be incorporated in a smartphone's rear camera hardware, while the 32MP ISOCELL JD1 is targeted at selfie cameras fitted inside hole-punch cutouts or pop-up modules. It offers a staggered-HDR feature for brighter and clearer images with less noise. The height of the sensor is comparable to that of the 0.9μm 20MP or 1.0μm 16MP sensors, which makes it a great fit on the front of a device. It is a 1/2.55-inch sensor with 48MP resolution, 2×2 pixel binning, and staggered HDR.

The HM2, GW3 and JD1 are now in mass production whereas the company is now sampling the GM5. It is said to be a faster and more power-efficient HDR technology that expedites image processing. For the latest news, please visit the Samsung Newsroom at

These 0.7μm ISOCELL image sensors will arrive on smartphones later this year.

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