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Toshiba Unveils 20-Megapixel CMOS Image Sensor For High-End Smartphone And Mobile Handsets

September 15, 2014

Sensor enables high-megapixel camera modules with height of less than 6mm for thinner mobile devices

20-Megapixel CMOS Image Sensor

SAN JOSE, Calif., — Toshiba America Electronic Components, Inc. (TAEC)*, a committed leader that collaborates with technology companies to create breakthrough designs, today announced its newest 1.12-micron CMOS image sensor (CIS) for high-end mobile handsets and smartphones with 20-megapixel (MP) resolution. With an optical size of 1/2.4 inch, the T4KA7 sensor enables development of camera modules with a z-height of 6mm or less to meet consumer demand for thinner, lighter mobile devices.

The new sensor joins Toshiba's recently announced 8MP and 13MP 1.12-micron back-side illuminated CIS solutions, which enable low-power, high-performance image capture and video recording for handheld mobile devices. The T4KA7 employs high-speed circuit technology that delivers a frame rate of 22 frames per second (fps) at full-resolution image capture - an improvement of 83 percent compared to the company's previous 20MP sensor.

"Toshiba developed this family to accommodate a range of consumer needs," said Andrew Burt, vice president of the Image Sensor Business Unit, System LSI Group at TAEC. "Our new T4KA7 sensor was created to allow manufacturers to design the next generation of ultrathin, power-aware high-end mobile products and smartphones demanded by users. As an established player in the CIS space, we look forward to playing a key role in enabling these and other emerging applications to come to market."

According to market research firm Yole Développement1, the CMOS image sensor market will experience a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10 percent between 2013 and 2018, with the total CIS market set to reach US$13 billion by 2018. Drivers include not only mobile technologies - as the industry shifts further toward CMOS replacing charge-coupled device (CCD) technology in image sensors - but also automotive, industrial and medical imaging applications, as well as wearable electronics.

The T4KA7 features a pixel count of 5384 (H) x 3752 (V). The 20MP sensor's advanced digital zoom capability delivers virtually no discernible image deterioration, even when zooming in very close on the subject being photographed. Other features include mapped couplet correction by 16Kbit one-time programmable (OTP) memory, enabling tight integration of high-density permanent memory without increasing the real estate on the sensor chip.

The first product in the Toshiba 1.12-micron CIS series, the 13MP T4K82, was announced earlier this year. It enables 240 fps HD video capture for higher-end mobile devices with 1080p resolution. The 8MP T4KA3, rolled out last month, targets midrange smartphones, tablets and action cameras with 720p resolution, enabling HD video capture at an industry-high2 rate of 240 equivalent fps. Both sensors feature Bright Mode and High Dynamic Range (HDR) technology.

Pricing and Availability

Sample shipments of the T4KA7 CMOS image sensor began last month , with samples priced at just under US$20 (2,000 Yen). Mass production is scheduled to begin in February 2015.

*About TAEC

Through proven commitment, lasting relationships and advanced, reliable electronic components, Toshiba enables its customers to create market-leading designs. Toshiba is the heartbeat within product breakthroughs from OEMs, ODMs, CMs, VARs, distributors and fabless chip companies worldwide. A committed electronic components leader, Toshiba designs and manufactures high-quality flash memory-based storage solutions, solid state drives (SSDs), hard disk drives (HDDs), solid state hybrid drives (SSHDs), discrete devices, custom SoCs/ASICs, imaging products, microcontrollers, wireless components, mobile peripheral devices, advanced materials and medical tubes that make possible today's leading smartphones, tablets, cameras, medical devices, automotive electronics, industrial applications, enterprise solutions and more.

Toshiba America Electronic Components, Inc. is an independent operating company owned by Toshiba America, Inc., a subsidiary of Toshiba Corporation, Japan's largest semiconductor manufacturer and the world's sixth largest semiconductor manufacturer (Gartner, 2013 Worldwide Semiconductor Revenue, April 2014). Founded in Tokyo in 1875, Toshiba is at the heart of a global network of over 590 consolidated companies employing over 200,000 people worldwide. Visit Toshiba's web site at

For additional company and product information, please visit

1"Status of the CMOS Image Sensors Industry Report," Yole Développement, Jan. 21, 2014.
2Research by Toshiba as of August 2014.

Information in this press release, including product pricing and specifications, content of services and contact information, is current and believed to be accurate on the date of the announcement, but is subject to change without prior notice.

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