Samsung’s New 5-Megapixel SoC Image Sensor Brings Digital Still Camera Capabilities to High-end Mobile Phones

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Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., a world leader in advanced semiconductor solutions, announced its newest quarter-inch optical format, 5-megapixel (Mp) system-on-chip (SoC) image sensor, the S5K4EA, which brings digital still camera functionality to high-end mobile phones. The chip was revealed at the sixth annual Samsung Mobile Solutions Forum held at the Westin Taipei Hotel. Targeted at smart phones and advanced handsets, the S5K4EA SoC imager combines a CMOS image sensor with an image signal processor, giving mobile handset designers a cost effective and size efficient solution.

“Mobile phones today allow us to stay in contact with friends and family not only by voice and text but also with high resolution images,” said Dr. Lee Yun Tae, senior vice president, image development team, System LSI Division, Samsung Electronics. “To meet the current demand for slimmer, sleeker mobile phones with digital still camera capabilities, Samsung brings 1.4-micron (um) pixel technology to this state-of-the-art imager solution.”

Samsung’s S5K4EA imager has regionally adaptive dynamic range expansion to brighten shadowed areas of a picture and intensify the clarity of brighter regions. In addition, its fast frame capture with anti-shaking control feature enables sharp pictures by reducing blur caused by jitter from unsteady hands. Capable of processing 1080p resolution images at 30 frames-per-second, the S5K4EA supports high quality video capture on advanced mobile phones.

To meet the current trend of ever smaller mobile devices with HD capabilities, Samsung’s advanced pixel shrink technology was utilized to achieve a tiny, ultra-sensitive 1.4um pixel size. Samsung’s proprietary pixel technology, the Samsung Enhanced Energy Steering (SEES), integrates more light into an optimized pixel structure to present clear, high resolution images. Advanced noise removal logic is also used to further improve image performance.

Samsung’s S5K4EA also offers auto focus, Xenon flash, mechanical or electronic rolling shutter. For designers, this new imager has a YUV output interface over MIPI2 or parallel. It also has JPEG with thumbnail output to speed up picture browsing on the phone.

The S5K4EA imager is available in an auto focus 8.5×8.5x6mm or smaller module. Samples are currently available with mass production slated for the first quarter of 2010.

According to market research firm, Techno Systems Research, camera phones are forecast to rise from 750 million units sold in 2009 to 1.23 billion units in 2013. The sales volume of 5Mp and higher high resolution camera phones is expected to reach 98 million units in 2009 and grow to 660 million units in 2013, at a compound annual growth rate of 61 percent.

About Samsung Electronics

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. is a global leader in semiconductor, telecommunication, digital media and digital convergence technologies with 2008 consolidated sales of US$96 billion. Employing approximately 164,600 people in 179 offices across 61 countries, the company consists of two business units: Digital Media & Communications and Device Solutions. Recognized as one of the fastest growing global brands, Samsung Electronics is a leading producer of digital TVs, memory chips, mobile phones and TFT-LCDs. For more information, please visit www.samsung.com.

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