Published in Mobiles

Sony can’t keep up with Chinese demand for smartphone cameras

by on05 May 2015

Exmor IMX214 – a victim of its own success

Sony is having a lot of trouble keeping up with demand for its Exmor IMX214 camera sensor, which is currently the part of choice for Chinese smartphone makers. 

The IMX214 is used on dozens of high-volume models churned out by Chinese smartphone makers, including Xiaomi. We had a chance to see the camera in action on the $150 Mlais M52 and were pleased with the results.

The problem is that everyone was pleased with he results, so Sony is now facing a massive backlog of orders for the IMX214, according to Chinese tech site Mobile Dad. In fact, it’s estimated that Sony can only cover 50% of the demand, which is bad news for a lot of Chinese smartphone outfits, not to mention Sony.

This may not sound like a big problem for the casual observer, but the 13-megapixel IMX214 has been the sensor of choice for many vendors over the past two quarters. It has ended up in all sorts of devices, from $150 to $250 mid-range phones, to $500 flagships. Basically the sensor delivers a lot of performance on a budget.

Like we said, the IMX214 is used in dozens of designs from numerous vendors, including popular devices like the Nexus 6, Huawei Ascend 7 series phones, ZTE Nubia Z7 phones, Xiaomi Mi4, Huawei Honor 6, OnePlus One, Oppo Find 7 series and numerous devices designed by smaller brands.

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