Samsung may have left the camera game behind, but the company is serious about increasing its share of the image sensor market and stealing some business away from Sony. In fact, they’re about to spend over $800 million to ramp up image sensor production yet again.
According to an article in Business Korea, Samsung is planning to convert another of its DRAM production lines in South Korea into a CMOS sensor production line. The company did the same thing with a different DRAM production line in 2018—apparently the two processes are very similar, so it’s more cost effective to convert a DRAM line than to build out a new sensor line from scratch.
Still, Business Korea cites industry experts who estimate the conversion will cost “at least one trillion won,” or approximately $817M USD.
If all goes according to plan, the production line should be up and operational as soon as this year, increasing Samsung’s production capacity for sensors like the 108MP ISOCELL Bright HMX, the recently announced 50MP ISOCELL GN1 with “DSLR-like” autofocus, and that rumored 150MP “almost 1-inch” sensor Samsung is allegedly working on.