Sony is promising improved low-light photography from its forthcoming range of smartphone camera sensors, thanks to the addition of white-light pixels.
The technology adds the white-light detectors to the red, green and blue (RGB)-sensing pixels already included in its existing devices.
Kodak patented a similar technology in 2007 but never put it to use. It is unclear whether Sony licensed the idea.
The move may help Sony sell more sensors to other manufacturers.
Smartphones typically use smaller lenses and image sensors than dedicated cameras, delivering blurred or dark pictures in low light.
Only a limited number have flashlight capability, which can be taxing on battery life and produce washed-out pictures.
After focusing on megapixels for years, camera sensor-makers are increasingly promoting low-light functionality as a selling point.
“This is good news for device makers, they can improve their cameras and give consumers a more functional camera that will work in better lighting situations,” said Brian Blau, research director at the technology consultants Gartner.
“That really means consumers have to think less about how to process their pictures and just have fun taking them.”
Source: BBC News