All eyes are on the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada as people await the latest technology breakthroughs. It’s rumored that Sony will unveil another in a series of the company’s innovations – a “curved sensor” for digital cameras.
Sony entered the DSLR camera market when it acquired Konica-Minolta in 2006. Since then, Sony has rolled out a series of innovations, including high-performance mirrorless cameras like the flagship A-7. Despite its technical leadership, the company trails Canon and Nikon in market share. But this may be about to change.
In mid-2015, Sony patented a “curved sensor,” which is expected to debut at the 2016 CES in January. So, what is a curved sensor and why is it important?
Like the human eye, a camera lens uses a curved glass lens to focus an image on the sensor, which records the image.
Traditionally, photo images are sharpest in the center and blur or soften at the edges. Unlike the curved retina of the human eye, a camera focuses the image on a flat silicone sensor, which results in distortion. But a curved sensor can correct the distortion and deliver significantly sharper images. One of the challenges to introducing curved sensors is the need for integrated lenses that take advantage of the curvature – and Sony plans to debut 7 new lenses at the 2016 CES. This may put Sony in an enviable position, where the company can either spur sales of its cameras and their proprietary sensors, or license the innovative sensors to other camera makers.