Broadcom VideoCore IV records 1080p video, takes 20MP photos
You hear a lot about camera modules on mobile phones, but not so much about the chip that does all the work of compressing the images and video. The new Broadcom BCM2763 VideoCore IV can handle photos up to 20 megapixels and record Full HD video among other things.
Of course, it would need a 20-megapixel sensor to do its 20-megapixel photo trick but the first devices using the Broadcom VideoCore IV are expected to come out in 2011. In two years, it's not unlikely some company will be pushing out its new 18MP or so camera phone. Because, you know, they already did 12MP and to the average consumer more is better.
The chip can also handle image stabilization, face and smile detection and take several images a second - we wouldn't expect anything less out of future high-end camera phones.
Even if 20MP image sensors that fit into mobile phones don't materialize, the Broadcom VideoCore IV can record 1080p video using H.264 High Profile (the codec used in Blu-ray discs).
Image capture is just part of the BCM2763 VideoCore IV repertoire - it can also play back Full HD video as well and do it over HDMI. What's left is for the phone to use the Micro HDMI connectors, which are the size of microUSB, and you get a pocketable HTPC.
The last trick that the Broadcom VideoCore IV has up its sleeve is that it works as a GPU with 128MB LPDDR2 of dedicated RAM, for rendering 3D graphics.
Since it's targeted at mobile devices, the Broadcom BCM2763 VideoCore IV is built using a 40nm process. Broadcom estimates that its reduced power consumption will lead to 4-6 hours of video recording and 8-10 hours of video playback on most mobile devices, and up 16 hours if the video is played over HDMI. If the internal memory of the device can fit those 16 hours that is.