Xiaomi is expected to launch the new flagship Xiaomi 12S series next week. The series, which comprises three models is set to succeed the existing 12-series of phones and will bring new performance and other features. Ahead of the launch, Xiaomi recently revealed the presence of a new camera sensor on the 12S Ultra that it co-developed with Sony which is one-inch in size.
For some context, a one-inch sensor is quite big for a smartphone, 1.7-times larger than the camera sensor on the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra, to be precise. The 12S Ultra will be the first phone in most markets like India to implement and use such a sensor. While popular phones like the Sony Xperia Pro-1 and the Aquos R7 had a similar sized sensor, these were not available in many markets and in the case of Sony, only partially used the large sensor. A larger sensor typically means better camera performance, given it can take in more light.
A new image shared on Weibo shows how large the sensor is compared to some other popular sensors right now, including the one on the iPhone 13 Pro Max. Check it out below.
The new sensor called the Sony IMX989 is theoretically capable of much better smartphone photography, perhaps comparable to the league of cameras like the Sony Cyber-shot series. The bigger sensor, clubbed with larger pixels could mean more light in photos, making night-time shots much more well-lit.
The IMX989 would also allow bigger optics to be attached to the camera setup, opening new possibilities. However, Xiaomi is yet to reveal more information on what the new camera can do.
Xiaomi is also partnering with German camera-maker Leica for the new cameras across the 12S series, also including the IMX989-powered 12S Ultra. However, we still don’t if the partnership will simply be a marketing gimmick as many brands have done before, or if it will actually contribute to new hardware on the phone.
We should find out more about this and the capabilities of the new Sony IMX989 during the launch of the Xiaomi 12S series, which is set to kick off on July 4 in China. International availability of the series is still a mystery, but the 12S series is likely to come to India months later, perhaps with a new name.