The Samsung Galaxy S24 and its variants haven’t been released yet, and we were discussing their official specifications this morning when a new leak about the S25 and S25+ emerged. Interestingly, the current S23 and soon to be released S24 cameras share a common feature: the ISOCELL GN3 sensor. However, Google, in its new Pixel 8 Pro, decided not to use this sensor and instead opted for a customized GNK with a 1.2µm pixel size, manufactured by Samsung itself. This decision resulted in an overall better camera performance, which is why the Samsung Galaxy S25 will no longer include the GN3. Why is Samsung dropping it?
Despite the good relationship between Google and Samsung, Google was not convinced by the GN3, even though it was offered at a lower price. Instead, Google preferred a sensor based on the previous GN2 but with a smaller pixel size, which has granted it the best camera on the market. This speaks volumes about the GN3…
Samsung won’t use the GN3 sensor in the Galaxy S25 and S25+; it will switch to another company’s sensor. Great news: The S25 and S25+ will no longer use the dreaded GN3 sensor; instead, they will feature Sony’s image sensor.
So, the mystery sensor will be from Sony, but why? Apparently, the Japanese company has developed a more advanced sensor. The information comes from Revegnus, a highly reputed leaker in the Apple and Samsung community, who also provides another important detail about the new Korean devices.
It seems that this new Sony sensor has a one-inch size. While this is not a novelty in and of itself, the number of megapixels remains to be revealed. Sony already has the IMX 989 on the market, which falls in the mid-to-high-end segment, so it’s expected that Samsung would opt for something better.
For years, both brands have been competing to offer the best camera technology, making this a truly historic piece of information.
Will Samsung say goodbye to Pixel Binning? There’s speculation that the Pixel Binning technology, which is pure marketing (resulting in 200 MP or similar figures), may eventually die out. This technology basically combined lower-resolution photos to achieve higher resolutions and outdo competitors.
Samsung refers to it as Tetra2Pixel for the HP2 sensor or Tetra3Pixel for the HP3 sensor. In theory, the widely loved IMX 989, with its 50 MP and one-inch size, struggles to capture light but can be improved with a larger lens.
Obviously, the challenge lies in the size occupied by the smartphone’s camera, which is why Google designed the Pixel phones with a distinctive notch, allowing for updates in future versions to maintain their unique design while enhancing the cameras.
Therefore, Samsung abandoning its own sensors in favor of Sony’s in their high-end phones (in this case, the S25 and S25+) is a historical milestone. We are still waiting to find out which specific sensor they selected for 2025.