Major iPhone 15 camera upgrade to be supplied by Sony

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If you've been debating on picking up the iPhone 14 or waiting for the iPhone 15 and love photography, Sony might want you to stick it out until next year.

As reported by Nikkei Asia, Sony has developed a "state-of-the-art" image sensor for smartphones and, unsurprisingly, that sensor is expected to be featured in the iPhone 15 lineup. Sony Semiconductor Solutions, who developed the sensor, will manufacture it at the company's plant in Nagasaki where it will be shipped off to Apple and other smartphone competitors.

While Apple has already made some impressive jumps in terms of camera quality with the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro models, this new sensor is expected to make significant improvements in a few key areas.

Go ahead, stand in front of the sun

The report says that the new image sensor "roughly doubles the saturation signal level in each pixel compared with conventional sensors. In other words, the sensors can capture more light and reduce overexposure or underexposure in certain settings, enabling a smartphone camera to clearly photograph a person's face even if the subject is standing against a strong backlight."

From taking a photo in direct sunlight to having backlight during a video call, there are plenty of scenarios in which Apple could use such a sensor to improve its photography and videography algorithms to improve camera quality.

In order to accomplish this improvement in handling backlight, Sony developed a new semiconductor architecture "which places photodiodes and transistors in separate substrate layers, allowing the sensor to add more photodiodes to the dedicated layer."

It's currently unclear if this sensor, due to its next-generation promises, will be available on all iPhone 15 models or if Apple will reserve the sensor for camera features on the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max.

Whatever the case, it looks like we have yet another jump in camera quality to look forward to next year.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.