Earlier today at the firm’s “Images of the Future” conference, Xiaomi dropped a bombshell. In keeping with a tweet on the official Xiaomi account, they have teamed up with Samsung to develop a phone with a 108MP “ultra-clear” image sensor.
Xiaomi truly made two announcements today. The first is that it will probably be utilizing Samsung’s ISOCELL GW1 64MP image sensor in an upcoming Redmi phone. That, in and of itself, is an enormous deal. The GW1 uses “tetra cell” technology (learn: a quad-Bayer array) to shoot 16MP photos in low light, however, due to a “re-mosaic” algorithm, it can still spit out full-resolution 64MP photos in bright conditions. It’s the highest resolution phone image sensor available, for now.
That’s as a result of this announcement was overshadowed by the information that Xiaomi and Samsung have teamed up on a fair larger decision “100MP” camera:
The teaser says “100MP” however claims a total resolution of 12032-9024, which comes out to just over 108MP when you do the math. Following within the GW1’s footsteps, we would guess that this, too, makes use of a quad-Bayer array to supply 27MP images in normal shooting conditions, relying on the identical re-mosaic algorithm to reconstruct full-res 108MP information when there’s enough of light to go around.
No additional details have been shared, so we don’t know when this image sensor shall be officially announced, or if it will be any physically greater than the ISOCELL GW1. The 64MP sensor already makes use of relatively small 0.8µm pixels in comparison with the 1.4µm pixels discovered within the iPhone XS and Google Pixel three sensors, so a further drop could imply an increase in noise for the “tetra cell” technology to deal with.