Samsung's ISOCELL Plus camera sensor upgrades low light performance

New pixel-separating material boosts light sensitivity by 15 percent.

While Samsung may be playing catch up in some fields, it continues to charge ahead with its smartphone camera tech. Today it's unveiled its new ISOCELL Plus technology, which means sharper and more accurate photos even in challenging light environments.

ISOCELL Plus, unsurprisingly, follows on from its first iteration of ISOCELL back in 2013, followed by last year's focus-boosting imaging sensor that could slot neatly into ultra slim phones, and then the 16-megapixel Slim 3P9 launched earlier this year, which also boasted a plug-and-play solution for mobile devices. ISOCELL Plus ups the ante even further.

ISOCELL technology works by creating a physical barrier between pixels, which reduces color crossover and allows each pixel to absorb more light than the typical backside-illuminated image sensors. However, as this barrier is made up of a metal grid, some light can be inadvertently absorbed or reflected. In ISOCELL Plus, the metal barrier has been replaced with a new material, developed by Fujifilm, which minimizes any optical loss.

This all results in higher color fidelity, plus what Samsung claims is a 15 percent boost in light sensitivity. It's also compatible with super resolution cameras over 20 mega pixels. And this all means better phone pictures on the fly. No word yet on how it will be integrated in future devices, but the technology will be demonstrated at the Mobile World Congress this week.