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Toshiba Expands Lineup of PDAF-Equipped CMOS Image Sensors for Smartphones and Tablets

August 19, 2015

New sensors enable high-speed, sharp focus for both still and moving images


SAN JOSE, Calif., – Toshiba America Electronic Components, Inc. (TAEC)*, a committed leader that collaborates with technology companies to create breakthrough designs, today announced its full lineup of backside-illuminated (BSI) CMOS image sensors equipped with phase detection auto-focus (PDAF) technology. In addition to the recently announced 16-megapixel (MP) T4KC3-121, the family includes three new products: the T4KA3-121 (8MP), T4KB3-121 (13MP) and T4KA7-121 (20MP). The new sensors were developed to speed sharp capture and playback of video and images in mobile devices.

The PDAF technology implemented in Toshiba’s new image sensors enables users to achieve a higher focusing speed than conventional auto-focus (AF). By bringing objects, near or far, into focus more quickly, PDAF enables shooting of clearer, less blurry images and movies. Already integrated into single-lens reflex (SLR) cameras, PDAF capability is increasingly being required by makers of smartphones and tablets to accommodate growing consumer demand.

“Featuring such advanced functionalities as high dynamic range (HDR), Bright Mode, high-speed capturing, and PDAF, Toshiba’s CMOS image sensors help deliver beautiful images and movies,” said Andrew Burt, vice president of the Image Sensor Business Unit, System LSI Group at TAEC. “Moreover, since PDAF doesn’t require space for AF sensors in the camera module, it enables development of thinner smartphones and other mobile devices with the ability to deliver sharp, natural images and movies in a high-speed manner.”

The T4KA3-121 achieves output speed of up to 30 frames per second (fps) at full 8MP resolution, with power consumption of 140 milliwatts (mW) or lower, while output speed for the T4KB3-121 is up to 30 fps at full 13MP resolution, and power consumption is 170 mW or lower. The T4KC3-121 achieves output speeds of up to 30fps at full 16MP resolution with 240 mW power consumption, and the T4KA7-121 reaches up to 22fps output at full 20MP resolution and 440 mW power consumption. Optical sizes are 1/4 inch, 1/3.07 inch, 1/2.78 inch and 1/2.4 inch, respectively, and all of the sensors have a pixel pitch of 1.12-micron BSI.


Samples of the PDAF-equipped T4KA3-121 and T4KB3-121 are available now, along with the T4KC3-121. Sample shipments of the T4KA7-121 will begin in October.

*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, 2014 Worldwide Semiconductor Revenue Estimates, December 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

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. Technical and application information contained here is subject to the most recent applicable Toshiba product specifications.

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