Smartphones are constantly getting better at imitating compact cameras, but so far we haven’t seen many cameras that attempt to mimic smartphones. That changes today with the Polaroid SC1630 Smart Camera, a 16-megapixel compact camera unveiled at CES. It’s a point-and-shoot camera that’s pretty much a smartphone without the phone. Powered by Android, the camera features a 3x (36-108mmm) optical zoom lens, a 3.2-inch touchscreen, Wi-Fi connectivity, 720p video recording, and geotagging. The Android OS means that users can install and use Android Market apps on the camera (e.g. Instagram once it becomes available). It’ll be available starting in April for $300.
I might hold out for a different/better brand than Polaroid, and “16 megapixels” does not necessarily mean anything when those sensors are stacked on top of each other like tribbles, and a 6.5mm lens (am I reading that right?) is freakishly small for point-and-shoots these days, but, yeah, include actual “phone” functionalities in that device, and I will be interested.
As it is, people have largely stopped carrying around point-and-shoots in favor of those strange little devices that can take pictures and make phone calls… slapping a phone’s OS into a camera will not really change that equation significantly.