In a move that has generated much excitement, Sony has created a 12.25-million-pixel CMOS imaging sensor for camera phones.
Beating Samsung's 10 megapixel sensor by more than 2 megapixels, the newly developed 12.25 megapixel image sensor is likely to be installed in mobile phones by March 2009.
Megapixel count is, of course, just one aspect of mobile digital cameras. Equally important are the quality of the lens, the aperture size and the camera's flash mechanism.
Sony addressed the potential for smaller sensors to risk 'image degradation', by stating that its 'unique pixel structure' helps deliver high sensitivity levels and high signal-to-noise ratio.
Sony issued a statement about the new imaging sensor. It said: "In recent years the convenience offered by cameras in mobile phones has driven an increase in their use, while demand for higher image quality has also continued to grow. In addition, as mobile phone designs have become more refined, and models become smaller and thinner, the need for further miniaturisation in mobile phone camera technology has also increased."
The 12.25MP 'IMX060PQ' Exmor sensor was announced alongside a new f/2.8 lens module, designed to produce the 35mm viewing angle equivalent of a 28mm optic. The lens module is expected to be shipped in September 2009.