Yesterday, Chinese smartphone manufacturer Oppo announced it has developed a SmartSensor, a smartphone sensor Oppo claims contains ‘the world’s smallest optical image stabilization technology.’
Teaming up with smartphone camera innovators MEMS Drive, Oppo has created a 3-axis sensor-based image stabilization system. Much like the systems found in Olympus and Sony mirrorless cameras, the SmartSensor compensates for camera shake through yaw, pitch and roll movements.
Amazingly, this is all done under 15ms, which Oppo claims is three times faster than lens-based optical image stabilization. And while it operates faster, it’s said to use up 50x less energy than lens-based stabilization.
The challenge to this was building a sensor that could be suspended from a central axis while also giving it the right amount of space to precisely move. This essentially means the sensor is all but floating on a single axis.
The technology is said to compensate for up to 1.5º of motion—not a lot, but still impressive considering it’s the first of its kind at the small size.
While not the intended purpose of this sensor, it’s also possible that the sensor-shifting capabilities could be used like Olympus and Sony cameras to create much larger images through slightly moving the sensor between shots and supersampling them.
There’s no timeframe given as to when we can be expecting to see the SmartSensor in a consumer phone, but it’s likely not too far off.