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DSLR-Quality Image Capture Coming to Mobile Phones

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MENLO PARK, USA – The lackluster performance of mobile cameras has been a major complaint against the smallest form of cameras, seen almost in every handset in market today. While manufacturers have managed to pack in sensors capable of capturing images at resolutions as high as 12 megapixels, the image quality leaves a lot to be desired for, especially in comparison to images captured from DSLR cameras. However, a new technology from California-based InVisage Inc., is set to revolutionalize the mobile imaging industry by radically improving the light capturing efficiency of sensors to as much as 90% from the present 25% of the silicon-based sensors.

The innovative technology, called the QuantumFilm technology, uses a new type of semiconductor material known as quantum dots, which InVisage claim is capable of producing “4x higher performance, 2x higher dynamic range and professional camera features not yet found in mobile image sensors”. This is made possible by the smaller size of the quantum dots, thus increasing the number of sensors that can be packed in a small area.

Highlighting the technological limitations of silicon-based sensors,  Jess Lee, InVisage President and CEO of InVisage remarked “tt is becoming increasingly difficult and expensive to develop next-generation image sensors using silicon; essentially, silicon has hit a wall… The fundamental problem is that silicon cannot capture light efficiently, but until now it has been the only option. The disruptive nature of QuantumFilm builds on silicon’s success in electronics, and elevates its function using new materials that are engineered from the ground up for light capture”.

InVisage further claims that the technology doesn’t add substantially to the present production cost of silicon-based sensors as the process of manufacturing QuantumFilm is similar to coating a layer of photoresistors on a standard wafer. Given the ease of adaptability and costing, the technology is expected to be commercialized and devices based on this technology can hit the shelves as early as mid-2011.

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By , Chief International Correspondent on Apr 3rd, 2010 GMT +2

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