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Samsung wants to squeeze a 600MP camera into your next smartphone

Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra camera module
Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra camera module (Image credit: Apoorva Bhardwaj / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • A leaked slide unveils Samsung's plans to develop a 600MP camera sensor.
  • Samsung has to address the size of the module, which would take up a large amount of space and protrude too far out of the back panel.
  • In the meantime, Oppo is working on a modular camera that could be detached from a smartphone.

Samsung has been pushing the resolution front this year, with the 108MP camera modules introduced in its high-end Galaxy S20 and Note20 models. While the first iteration may not have panned out too well, that hasn't stopped Samsung from wanting to push the envelope further. It's been tipped that Samsung is planning to increase camera resolution by nearly six times that of its current flagships!

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For a while, Samsung has been tipped to be working on a smartphone camera with a whopping 600MP resolution. The rumor has just been corroborated by tipster Ice Universe, who seems to have grabbed a slide from a confidential investor presentation. Apparently, Samsung is hoping a larger sensor and resolution would minimize the loss in quality when zooming during 4K and 8K video capture.

The presentation lays out Samsung's plans for its ISOCELL sensor, which would see a huge increase in physical size. The sensor would have 0.8µm pixels, similar to what's found on the Galaxy Note20 Ultra's 108MP sensor. Because of this, the new 1/0.57" sensor, in its current state, would take up roughly 12% of a smartphone's back panel. Additionally, the sensor currently measures 22mm in thickness, making it not ideal for a smartphone with only 9mm thick.

Source: Oppo/WIPO (Image credit: Source: Oppo/WIPO)

It's unlikely that Samsung will bring a 600MP sensor any time soon, at least until it can address the sensor size. In the meantime, Oppo might have a solution, as a patent recently cropped up for a removable camera module. Oppo is always trying to push the envelope with its smartphones, going so far as to unveil a concept rollable device. A detachable camera module could be the kind of modularity that could help Samsung, for example, address its sensor size problem while adding a number of interesting use-cases.

Derrek is a long-time Nokia and LG fanboy who loves astronomy, videography, and sci-fi movies. When he's not working, he's most likely working out or smoldering at the camera.

7 Comments
  • Will the files be huge. Am I uninformed.
  • Each photo will be about 157 MB, more or less depending on the amount of detail in the photo. A 12 MP photo is usually around 3 MB.
  • The focal distance from the lens to the sensor is why it needs to be 22mm deep. Using multiple sensors and using AI to merge them is one way to solve the depth issue...
  • I am still struggling to get crisp pictures of curved wine bottle labels, for example, on my Note 20 Ultra. DOF ruins everything.
  • I think google has more than proven that samsung, and other OEM's, should focus on the software behind the camera rather than the hardware. Doing a 600mp camera is pure stupidity for the sake of spec numbers and nothing more.
  • Google to the pixel - You get a 12.2 MP sensor. Take it or get lost.
  • Is a 600 overkill? Probably so! How about focusing on faster updates, 3 day battery life, and more color choices!