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The Samsung Galaxy S11 could have a whopping 64MP camera

The Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus. Image credit: TechRadar

Newer phones nearly always have better cameras - and we saw that with the impressive triple-camera array on the Samsung Galaxy S10 - but Samsung could  be readying another big change for snapping on the future Samsung Galaxy S11.

In a post in its newsroom, Samsung announced it has created two new camera sensors which are designed for smartphones – one 48MP, and another with a whopping 64MP resolution.

Currently, the highest resolution camera you'll find in a smartphone is 48MP, seen in handsets like the Honor View 20 or Xiaomi Mi 9, although that's a figure beaten by traditional cameras. 

Of course just because Samsung has released this sensor, it doesn't mean that we'll see it in the next flagship. In fact, it would be a large step up for the brand that's only packing 16MP into one of the sensors of the Galaxy S10 Plus, for instance.

But with competition from Huawei seeing a huge jump in camera pixel density, and all smartphone manufacturers bringing in multiple sensors on the rear of their phones, it's a lot more likely that Samsung could be readying a 64MP sensor for its next flagship S-series handset.

The technology to support pictures like this has been in phone processors for a while  –  Qualcomm recently admitted its Snapdragon 855 chipset can support pictures of up to 192MP, although camera sensors are still several years out from reaching that figure.

Which phones could have the sensors?

One might wonder if the 64MP sensor is destined for the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 -  however, we expect to see that in the next few months, so it seems unlikely that Samsung would be announcing the new sensor so close to launch, so if it were to be in a flagship phone, February 2020 (when the S11 is likely to land) makes more sense.

Saying that, we could see the sensors in an unexpected handset – we know Samsung is working on several foldable phones to launch after the Samsung Galaxy Fold, and the company recently launched the Samsung Galaxy A80 with high-end camera specs.

Samsung does provide the sensors to other smartphone companies too, and certain Xiaomi, Vivo, Apple, Motorola and Nokia phones use cameras from the company, so equally we'd expect to see high-density sensors appearing in phones from those brands too.

Tom Bedford

Staff Writer, Phones

Tom's role in the TechRadar team is as a staff writer specializing in phones and tablets, but he also takes on other tech like electric scooters, smartwatches, fitness trackers and more.