Miniature high-resolution webcams could soon be coming to laptops

Laptops are poised to get even thinner this year, and they won’t have to sacrifice webcam quality.

Immervision has announced a new 3.8mm thin 8-megapixel webcam sensor aimed at laptops and tablets. The module is advertised as the thinnest camera system for a laptop in the world.

Immervision's new small webcam module, next to a Canadian coin.

Immervision bills itself as “the world’s premier creator of advanced vision systems that combine optics, image processing, and sensor fusion technologies.”

“Immervision’s 8 MP ultra-wide-angle lens-and-sensor combo is only 3.8 mm thick and offers a high-quality solution for a number of applications requiring better resolution, a wide field of view, and excellent distortion control,” the company announced towards the end of CES this year. “This solution is capable of handling a wide range of videoconferencing applications, including capturing wider scenes with excellent image sensor coverage, pixel density, and quality.”

The camera module’s high megapixel resolution arrives at a time when the global health pandemic is still raging, forcing many individuals to shift to or continue with remote and hybrid employment. Webcam technology advancements will almost certainly aid in better collaboration and communication among remote workers.

The issue in creating a high-resolution camera sensor in a small size, according to Immervision, is being able to shrink the lens and camera module while maintaining excellent image quality. Many businesses are unable to do so since a smaller module frequently results in low resolution, distortion, and poor performance in low light.

Immervision overcame this by combining its technology and software to provide better outcomes.

The Lenovo ThinkPad Z16 with a videoconferencing app open.

“This miniature camera module can be used in conjunction with Immervision’s Wide-Angle Distortion Correction Dewarping Algorithms, with Face and Body Protection Algorithm, enabling [manufacturers] with an unprecedented, novel, and fresh video call experience,” said Patrice Roulet Fontani, Immervision co-founder and vice president of technology.

According to the business, it is collaborating with laptop makers to extend its camera technology to laptops, tablets, hybrids, and convertibles. Immervision does not provide a timetable for when the new webcam technology will be available.

The rise of videoconferencing has resulted in an increase in the number of monitors that now have a full videoconferencing system. Hopefully, this means we’ll see thinner, lighter laptops with Immervision’s camera module on the market sooner rather than later.