iPhone 15 could be armed with new Sony sensor twice as capable as current cameras

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iPhone 15 could use new Sony sensor twice as capable as current cameras
We are presumably still a solid ten months away from the unveiling of Apple's next iPhone lineup, the iPhone 15 series, but the rumor mills are already running wild. The latest leak pertains to the iPhone 15's camera.

One of the main upgrades of the iPhone 14 range was the Pro models' new main camera and while we are not expecting Apple to bump up the megapixel count again, the camera performance is still expected to improve significantly.

iPhone 15 may feature Sony's groundbreaking new sensor


A new Nikkei Asia report (via 9to5Mac) claims that Sony has developed a new camera sensor that doubles the saturation signal level. This means that it will have twice the light-gathering capability of current sensors. This should theoretically help reduce noise and improve the dynamic range.

The report adds that this will also help with overexposure (very bright images with details lost in the brightest part) and underexposure (very dark images with details lost in the darkest areas), enabling the iPhone 15 camera to churn out clear images in tricky conditions, such as when a subject is in front of a strong backlight. It appears that the sensor will try to balance background and foreground exposure to achieve this.

The sensor will use a new semiconductor architecture that will separate photodiodes and pixel transistors onto different layers instead of placing them on the same substrate. 

Sony is not developing this sensor tech exclusively for Apple and it will also be shipped to other smartphone manufacturers.

The bottom line is that the new sensor tech could give the iPhone 15 an edge over the current top camera phones. The highest-end model, which will probably be known as the iPhone 15 Ultra, and not iPhone 15 Pro Max, is also highly likely to have a periscope zoom unit for better optical zooming.

Other brands are also making their moves, so it will be a close fight. Samsung, for instance, is tipped to equip the forthcoming Galaxy S23 Ultra with a 200MP camera. Others like Vivo and Xiaomi are experimenting with 1-inch sensors.

Back to the iPhone 15, cosmetic changes are also expected. Reports have said that the new models - or at least the higher-end ones - could feature the more premium titanium material, curved edges, and solid-state buttons.

It's almost a given that the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Ultra will be armed with a new 3nm chip. Also, unlike the years prior, there will be marked differentiation between the two upper-end models.
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