Samsung has introduced a Britecell, photo technology that uses smaller pixels which have more sensitivity to low light levels, a combination that means brighter photographs even in poor lighting situations.
The developing Britecell technology was revealed by the company at the Samsung Electronics 2015 Investors Forum and could appear in Samsung smartphones and other consumer devices sometime in 2016, according to a Nov. 18 story by SamMobile. The announcement followed a patent application for Britecell, which was recently filed, the story reported.
Kyushik Hong, who heads the Samsung LSI marketing team, "revealed the Britecell technology which promises enhanced light sensitivity in low light conditions with less color artifact," the story reported. "The presentation also made it clear that Britecell is not the rumored 1/2-inch sensor with large pixels that has been rumored for the Galaxy S7 because it actually has smaller one micron pixels, and Samsung says that this helps reduce module height by 17 percent while maintaining low light sensitivity."
The Britecell camera sensor is used along with Samsung's Smart WDR technology "to provide a more detailed image by using multi-exposure for better spatial resolution and Phase Detection Auto Focus or PDAF for faster and more accurate auto focus," the story reported. Samsung has not yet confirmed when the Britecell feature will appear in its devices.
Improving smartphone cameras is a constant goal of device makers as consumers demand better images from their smartphones.
Samsung's latest two flagship smartphones, the Galaxy S6 Edge+ and the Galaxy Note 5 phablet, went on sale in August and are equipped with 16-megapixel rear-facing cameras with Smart Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) and a 1.9 f lens and automatic real-time High Dynamic Range (HDR) processing for improved low-light picture quality. They also feature a 5MP front camera with additional improvements such as a quick launch feature to capture photos faster with fewer finger taps to unlock the phones. Both the S6 Edge+ and the Note 5 include 5.7-inch quad HD Super AMOLED displays, 4GB of RAM—up 1GB from previous versions—and more powerful octa-core Exynos 7420 processors.
Apple has also been working to improve the cameras in its iPhone models. In September, when the latest iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus phones were announced, they included an all-new 12MP iSight camera that has 50 percent more pixels than earlier iPhones. The latest iPhones also received increased performance and a new feature called 3D Touch that adds new input capabilities for users to help them get the most out of the devices. The new iPhone 6s includes a 4.7-inch display, while the 6s Plus includes a 5.5-inch display, both of which are wrapped in a new stronger cover glass. Both new phones are built around Apple's fastest smartphone chip, the A9, which is a third-generation 64-bit chip. Both phones are also now capable of 4K video, run on iOS 9 and include new 5MP FaceTime HD front cameras.