Samsung Offers New PC Camera CMOS Image Sensor System-on-Chip for Real-time HD Video

(Auszug aus der Pressemitteilung)

SEOUL, KOREA December 05, 2008 – Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., the

world’s leader in advanced semiconductor solutions, announced today that it
has expanded its industry-leading portfolio of CMOS image sensors to
include a new high-definition 1/4-inch, 1.2 Megapixel (Mp) system-on-chip
(SoC) imager, the S5K4AW, for notebook and desktop computers. Developed
with a strong focus on real-time high-definition (HD) video capture,
Samsung’s new S5K4AW sensor has immediate applications in areas such as
business video conferencing, Internet video sharing, direct to web
scanning, biometrics and security.

„The notebook and desktop PC market requires an image sensor solution
specifically optimized for video,“ said Dr. Yiwan Wong, vice president of
marketing for Samsung Electronics‘ System LSI Division. „For PC users, the
main concern of an embedded camera is video, not still image capturing.
We’re addressing this nuance with our new CMOS image sensor SoC that has
been completely designed, and performance optimized, with high-definition
and VGA video in mind.“

Instead of developing a sensor with 1.3Mp, which is better suited for still
image capture, Samsung’s new S5K4AW CMOS image sensor SoC addresses the
specific needs of HD video applications. By incorporating a technique
called binning in 2×2 pixel groups, the S5K4AW’s 1.2Mp resolution (1280×960
pixel format) also can display standard VGA format without the need for
cropping. In doing so, Samsung has eliminated the annoying problem of
losing the top or the bottom of a scene while video conferencing or video
file sharing on social media networks such as YouTube.

Real-time video capture presents other challenges for sensor designers,
including how to deal with low light sensitivity. The same binning
technique used by Samsung’s new S5K4AW sensor for video resolution also
significantly improves the imager’s sensitivity to low light. The
industry’s typical method of binning results in an improved sensitivity of
approximately 1.2x. Samsung’s breakthrough in binning shows a sensitivity
improvement of nearly 3x. This is critical when the only illumination on
the scene might be from the computer screen itself.

„Embedded display cameras are rapidly becoming a standard feature for PCs
and notebook computers,“ said Bob O’Donnell, program vice president,
clients and displays for IDC. „With the move to wide format displays, HD
video is coming to the PC, making HD formatted cameras developed
specifically for this market standard as well.“

By focusing its image sensor expertise in the PC imaging market, Samsung
has designed the new S5K4AW imager as a 1/4-inch SoC that uses a 2.8um
pixel size, supports 720p HD video at 30 frames per second, and captures
VGA video at up to 60 frames per second.

Samsung is currently sampling its S5K4AW CMOS image sensor SoC to select
customers. Mass production is expected in the first half of 2009.