IFA: Samsung launches EK-GC100 Galaxy Camera packing Android
The Galaxy Camera should be thought of more as a camera with wireless networking than as a phone with a really nice camera. That’s because, though it uses mobile networks, it won’t come with a phone number. That means you’ll be able to use VoIP (voice over Internet Protocol) for telephony, but not traditional phone and text-messaging features.
Android Jelly Bean 4.1 is available on the camera, meaning a wide range of apps, including Instagram and Facebook are available to download and use on the camera.
Integrated Wi-Fi is also included to download apps, as well as send and share images via social networking sites and email.
An internal 8GB memory is included, along with a slot for a micro SD card. On the back of a camera is a large 4.77 inch HD Super Clear Touch Display LCD screen.
Other camera features include 10 smart pro features, auto cloud back-up, smart content manager, photo wizard, movie wizard, voice control and connectivity to Drop Box. In addition, Samsung supplies its own Photo Wizard and Video Wizard software and another tool designed to get good group shots.
Google Mobile services such as Search, Maps, Gmail, Google Plus, YouTube and Google Chrome Browser can all be used from the camera interface. GPS navigation is also included.
The camera’s 21x optical zoom can be controlled by either button or touchscreen, with Optical Image Stabiliser enabling images to stay clear and crisp. The 23mm equivalent lens is wider than most smartphones, enabling delivery of wide-angle shots.
Top alternatives to this model are Nikon’s new Coolpix S800c, which has Android and Wi-Fi networking, and Nokia’s 808 PureView, with a giant 41-megapixel camera but the dying Symbian operating system. Nokia’s model relies on digital cropping as a substitute for a zoom lens, a design that makes it somewhat more compact than the Samsung even when the latter device is turned off and collapsed.
The Samsung Galaxy Camera price is yet to be confirmed, as is an availability date.
Samsung’s research shows increasing spending on high-end cameras, though, and that’s where it hopes this model will fit in. It’ll be priced the same as high-end compact cameras — though not as high as the mirrorless models with interchangeable lenses such as Samsung’s NX line.