Late last year Xiaomi president Lin Bin teased an upcoming phone with a 48-megapixel camera, and today the company has revealed it in full.
Despite the eye-catching headline spec, it’s turned out to be a product under the entry-level Redmi brand called the Redmi Note 7.
Design-wise, it looks very similar to Xiaomi’s low-cost Mi Play announced a few weeks back, with a small circular display notch, a back panel with colorful gradients, a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor, and rear-facing dual cameras — one of which uses that much-vaunted 48-megapixel image sensor and an f/1.8 lens, the other of which is 5 megapixels and used for depth information.
The camera can take photos with its 48 million tiny 0.8-micron pixels in good lighting, or combine neighboring pixels for what’s claimed to be the equivalent of a 12-megapixel photo taken with larger 1.6-micron pixels.
At half an inch across, the sensor is physically quite a bit larger than what’s typically found in smartphones, which should give it strong light-gathering capability.
Of course, hardware is only half the story with phone cameras, so we’ll have to see how that works out in practice.