The smartphone accomplished its incredible job with a wide range of different sensors —Today I will tell you, what are they, what do they all actually do? & various examples of sensors
What are really sensors?
A SENSOR is a device that detects and measures the conversion of energy based on physical parameters or processes and converts the real world information into an electrical signal.
In Smartphones there are plenty of different sensors, some of the most used types of mobile sensors discussed here, (the 9th one is based on latest technology) are:
Different types of Sensors :
- Proximity Sensors
- Light Sensors
- Hall effect Sensor
- Fingerprint Sensor
- Iris Scanner
- Touch Screen
The proximity sensor is a type of mobile sensor that is able to detect the presence of nearby objects without any physical contact, IT comprised of an infrared LED and an IR light detector. This type of sensors are placed near the earpiece of a phone.
The type of sensor works by shining an invisible beam to humans( infrared light ) which is reflected from a nearby object and picked up by the IR detector.
These type of sensors are used in Automatic Brightness Adjuster to decrease or increase the brightness. First, it measures how bright the ambient light then, It uses this data to adjust the display’s brightness automatically
It converts light energy of various wavelengths from infrared to UV into the electrical energy(or to an electrical signal). This is the reason that they are named as photoelectric devices.
Some of the Higher-end phones like – Samsung galaxy S10+, google pixel3, iPhones have a built-in barometer – It is a type of sensor that can measure atmospheric pressure.
Data measured by this sensor can be used to determine, how high the device is above Sea level, which results in improved GPS accuracy.
it consists of pressure transducer sensors which use an enclosure and a sensitive diaphragm to detect pressure changes and convert it into an electric signals.
There’s is a digital compass in our smartphones that are usually based on a sensor called magnetometer.
It provides a simple orientation with respect to the Earth’s magnetic field.
As a result, your phone always knows which way is North so it can auto rotate your digital maps depending on your physical orientation.
Magnetometers are also found in metal detectors & that’s the reason why metal detector apps works on your smartphone.
Hall effect sensors are Fast operation which is used for proximity switching, positioning, speed detection, and current sensing applications. It is usually located on upfront side of the display.
Hall Effect Sensors devices are activated by an external magnetic field.
When the Magnetic flux density around the sensor exceeds the readings increase and screen turn off and When the cover is lifted up,
The readings decrease thus the screen turns on.
Accelerometers also are known as gravity sensors,
In smartphones, they detect changes in orientation and tells the screen to rotate.
Apps use this mobile sensor to determine whether your phone is in portrait or landscape orientation.
It detects acceleration, vibration, and tilt to determine movement and exact orientation along the three axes.
It consists of two parts which are the piezoelectric effect and the capacitance sensor.
It uses microscopic crystal structures that become stressed due to accelerative forces.
These crystals create a voltage from the stress and the accelerometer interprets the voltage to determine velocity and orientation.
The gyroscope is a sensor that can provide orientation information with greater precision.
It is the best example of sensor, which adds another level of precision so that you could get a 360-degree photo sphere. Some of the Popular apps like Pokemon Go, 3d-racing games, Google Maps uses gyroscope sensor
Gyroscope is based on the principle of conservation of angular momentum.
GPS units in our smartphone communicate with the satellites to determine our precise location of any place.
Modern-day GPS units inside smartphones combine GPS signals with other data, like cell signal strength, to get more accurate location readings.
These type of sensors are used in Popular apps like Ola, Uber, Zomato, Swiggy
There’s a thermometer in every smartphone but they’re used to monitor the temperature inside the device and its battery and If a component is detected to be overheating, the system shuts itself down to prevent damage.
However, some Smartphones come with additional thermometers to measure temperature like-Samsung Galaxy S4, Samsung Galaxy Note 3, Motorola X.
also read: Home automation and its gadgets, using IOT
Touch Screen is an example of a mobile sensor which can work with anything that holds an electrical charge – including human skin.
The Capacitive Touch Screen which we uses, are constructed from materials like copper or indium tin oxide that store electrical charges in an electrostatic grid of tiny wires, each smaller than a human hair
when a finger hits the screen, A tiny electrical charge is transferred to the finger to complete the circuit, creating a voltage drop on that point of the screen.
Tip: Apple introduced First capacitive touchscreen in its iPhone(1G)2007 before that resistive screens were used in the display.
also read: In-display Vs Under-display fingerprint
The Fingerprint sensor is basically of two types Capacitive fingerprint sensor & Optical fingerprint sensor, it generates an image of the ridges and valleys that make up a fingerprint and records your fingerprint electrically.
And Recently Qualcomm in Dec 2018, introduced new Ultrasonic fingerprint Scanner, these are currently used, only by Samsung in its latest Galaxy S10/S10+ series
Note: Motorola Atrix introduced First optical fingerprint sensor publicly in 2011,
And in 2013 Apple introduced iPhone 5s, first capacitive fingerprint sensor
It is a type of biometric identification type sensor that uses mathematical pattern-recognition techniques that uses both visible and near-infrared light to take a clear, high-contrast picture of an individual iris.
Note: Fujitsu ARROWS NX F-04G, Japanese mobile company launched the first iris scanner in 2015.
It is an acoustic to an electric transducer or mobile sensor that detects sound signals and converts them into an electrical signal.
Apart from making and receiving calls, it is also used for voice search and voice commands for digital assistant apps like Google Assistant, Alexa, Siri, etc.
Note: “The first handheld cellular phone call was made on April 3, 1973, by Motorola engineer Martin Cooper from Sixth Avenue in New York while walking between 53rd and 54th streets.”
These were some of the different sensors used as Mobile sensors that we use in our Day to Day life form car parking sensors to changing TV Channels of some Saas Bhau. These have become an integeral part of our life.
also, Comment if there is any important mobile sensor left