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Ams And SmartSens Partner On 3D And NIR Sensors

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ams, a worldwide supplier of high performance sensor solutions, has signed a formal letter of intent to collaborate in the field of Image Sensors with SmartSens Technology, a global supplier of high-performance CMOS image sensors.

This collaboration complements ams' strategic approach to further broaden its portfolio for all three 3D technologies - Active Stereo Vision (ASV), Time-of-Flight (ToF) and Structured Light (SL) - while accelerating time to market for a more differentiated set of new products. To quickly meet an expected increasing demand for 3D sensing solutions in mobile devices, the partnership's initial focus will be on 3D Near Infrared (NIR) sensors for facial recognition and applications requiring a high Quantum Efficiency (QE) in the NIR range (2D and 3D).

To speed up the time to market for customers, the companies will collaborate on the development of a 3D ASV reference design to support the planned future launch of a 1.3MP Stacked BSI Global Shutter Image Sensor with state of the art QE up to 40% at 940nm. This NIR sensor is a perfect addition to ams' 3D illumination offerings, extending ams' 3D portfolio and optimizing overall system performance. The reference design will enable high performance depth maps for payment, face recognition and AR/VR applications at a highly competitive total system cost.

“This collaboration with SmartSens in Image Sensors brings customers the benefit of a faster time to market for 3D Active Stereo Vision and Structured Light applications in mobile phones and other devices including IoT applications, based on ams' industry leading 3D technology and core IP on Voltage-Domain Global Shutter. The collaboration will also help accelerate time to market for exciting new automotive applications such as in-cabin 2D and 3D sensing,” said Stéphane Curral, Executive Vice President for the Division Image Sensor Solutions at ams.

“We are pleased to partner with ams to combine our expertise in Image Sensors and NIR technology with ams' 3D expertise and core Image Sensing IP. We believe this combination of robust technology and channel to market will provide an optimal solution to meet customer demand,” said Chris Yiu, Chief Marketing Officer, SmartSens Technology.

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