***May 18th, 2006 - *Micron Technology, Inc. has just announced the completion of the world’s smallest 8-megapixel CMOS sensor, which will be capable of capturing fast, high-resolution photographs and entry-level HD video content. This sensor will be able to take 10 pictures per second at the full 8-megapixel resolution or 30 pictures per second at a reduced resolution of 2-megapixels.
In addition to the chip’s impressive still image specifications, the newly developed sensor will be able to capture 30 fps, 720p HD video content, comparable to the HD capabilities of introductory camcorders currently on the market. The 8MP sensor is designed to be compatible with the standard 1/2.5-inch optical format found on mainstream digital cameras, since each pixel measures just 1.75 microns.
Micron Technology, Inc. also announced that they’re working on a new 1.4-micron pixel, and have since exhibited sample photographs captured with it. The small 1.4-micron pixels may find a sizeable demand within both the digital camera and cellular camera phone market. Until now, the image quality of photographs captured on cell phones has been compromised due to size constraints. With the development and refinement of this smaller pixel size, Micron Tech may be able to provide camera phone manufacturers with increased resolution and potentially superior image quality without increasing the size of the unit.
Bob Gove, vice president of Micron Technology’s imaging group, stated that, "With the 8-megapixel image sensor being designed with our latest 1.75-micron pixel and the encouraging results we’re seeing with the next-generation smaller pixel at 1.4-microns, Micron leads the industry in both smaller and higher performance image sensors, enabling our customers to create new and exciting camera products."
The 8-MP chip will be released to a general customer sampling in the fall of 2006, with production beginning in earnest in the first half of 2007. Pricing of this new chip is yet to be determined.