Toshiba reveals 13MP CMOS camera sensor, low-light shooting, reduced noise may come natural with it

Japanese multinational electronics company, Toshiba, announced Thursday the existence of its new 13-megapixel CMOS (complementary metal–oxide–semiconductor) camera sensor that promises to bring better low-light shooting minus the noise. Toshiba expects this 1.12 micrometer sensor to become a hit especially for smartphone and mobile device manufacturers. Only a few of the devices nowadays sport considerably high megapixel sensors due to lack of innovation in this field.

Of all handsets released this year, only Nokia 808 PureView features 41MP snapper and majority come with below 15MP sensors even high-end devices. Toshiba’s innovation may not be put to waste and while it could be the first to use the CMOS for its own devices, its per-unit price may not hurt OEMs if they, too, will package it with their devices.

The “new CMOS image sensor created with on-circuit color noise reduction lowers pixel noise and improves image quality on smartphones, mobile devices,” according to Toshiba. Revealing the technology it used to produce the sensor, it reportedly “implemented back side illumination (BSI) technology and integrated color noise reduction (CNR) to develop its newest CMOS image sensor that fits into an 8.5mm x 8.5mm size camera module and enables high-quality pictures even in low-light conditions.”

The company took into consideration that manufacturers are trying to produce smaller and thinner devices, so it also reduced the pixel size of image sensors. Having done so, the company knew image qualities would be greatly impacted, so it developed a CMOS camera sensor to address such issue. To package it all, Toshiba offers a 13-megapixel camera sensor that brings along smaller pixels than any typical sensors available in the market today.

“The miniaturization of pixel size reduces the amount of light entering into the pixel which impacts image quality. Toshiba addresses the challenge of pixel miniaturization with its newest CMOS image sensor,” said Andrew Burt, vice president of the Analog and Imaging Business Unit, System LSI Group at TAEC.

Toshiba 13MP camera sensor samples will be made available in December. It will be marketed at a price of $20 per unit. Toshiba is trying to acquire a bigger piece of the pie in the mobile market. It’s just a matter of time before we can see new Toshiba devices sporting the new sensor.