Smartphones have come a long way from having just one camera on them. In 2019, we saw the introduction of the quad camera setup that saw four cameras on the rear of the smartphone, and add that with the front camera, that's five cameras in total on a smartphone. As such, the ones providing those cameras have a lot on their plate, and this is the case for Sony Corp who won't be having any holidays this season due to heavy demand.
Despite Sony's own smartphone line has yet to reach any form of significance, the company has been doing well providing big companies like Samsung and Huawei with image sensors for their smartphone cameras. These include cameras with resolutions exceeding 40MP, can capture ultrawide-angle images and come with depth sensors - all of which are major factors for consumers when choosing a smartphone. With such demands, Sony has to pull out all the stops.
According to Bloomberg, Sony will run its chip factories constantly throughout the holidays for a second straight year in order to keep up with demand for sensors used in mobile phone cameras. The electronics giant is more than doubling its capital spending on the business to 280 billion yen ($2.6 billion) this fiscal year and is also building a new plant in Nagasaki that will come online in April 2021.
Terushi Shimizu, the head of Sony’s semiconductor unit, said that “Judging by the way things are going, even after all that investment in expanding capacity, it might still not be enough. We are having to apologize to customers because we just can’t make enough.”
Thanks to this though, semiconductors are now Sony’s most profitable business after the PlayStation. Sony is now looking to a new generation of sensors that can see the world in three dimensions, which is something Apple has already planned for their lineup next year.
All in all, Sony won't be having a holiday anytime soon, but it looks like things will continue to look up for the company as long as they can do their best to meet client demands. Now to see if they can do more for their own line of smartphones.