Selfies. The unfortunate (and hugely successful) product of people taking pictures of themselves. But be that may, the art of self-photography has exponentially grown in popularity – so much so that the word is even included in the Merriam-Webster dictionary.
So it really comes as no surprise that camera giant Sony announced today that they will be investing $345 million to increase production of front-facing image sensors for smartphones and tablets. Sony is said to ramp up production of stacked CMOS sensors at two of their factories.
Sony supplies image sensors to major players in the smartphone and tablet industry like Apple, and because of a huge focus on selfies it raise production by 13% to 68 000 wafers a month. Having better image sensors will allow the likes of Apple and Samsung to outfit their smartphones with better front-facing cameras. Currently the Samsung Galaxy S5 has a 2 megapixel front camera, while the iPhone 5 has a 1.2 megapixel camera.
According to Reuters, “Imaging sensors are an area of strength for Sony, which leads the market ahead of Omnivision Technologies Inc, whose sensors are mostly used in front-facing smartphone modules that typically have lower specifications than the main rear camera.”
Not only will better image sensors hep produce better quality selfies, but it will also help to improve the quality of video calls from services like Skype, as they make use of the front camera for visuals.