21
Aug
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Show of hands: who wants to pay $350 for a low-end point-and-shoot camera? How about it has a built in WiFi connection? No?  OK, last chance: what if it ran Android... Gingerbread?

Anyone?

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Nikon is hoping to hear more than crickets when it brings the Coolpix S800c to market in September, with a suggested retail price of $349.95. All joking aside, as a low-end camera it's got some pretty decent specs: 16 megapixels, a 10x optical zoom, a 3.5-inch touch-sensitive OLED display, and 1080p video recording. The hook is WiFi and GPS combined with what equates to a mid-range Android smartphone circa summer 2010: Gingerbread runs on that 3.5-inch screen, with (surprisingly) full access to the Google Play Store. Based on the single shot of the user interface, it looks like it's a nearly stock Android UI.

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Putting aside the fact that it would just be weird to surf the web or listen to a podcast on what is definitely more camera than phone, I can see the attraction: shutterbugs could post respectable snapshots to Facebook instantly and get better Instagram photos than all their friends, assuming that they're within range of a WiFi hotspot. Nikon mentions the ability to share photos directly with an Android phone or tablet, but the method isn't declared. Naturally the S800c will function well enough as a camera, though the type of expandable memory isn't mentioned in the press release.

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What say you, Android faithful? Is the fact that a camera runs Android enough to pique your interest, or is Nikon's latest just n attempt to grab headlines (like this one!) with a software gimmick?

GREAT IMAGES ARE NOW TRENDING: WITH WI-FI® CONNECTIVITY AND A POWERFUL ANDROID™ PLATFORM, THE NEW NIKON COOLPIX S800c IS THE EASY WAY TO INSTANTLY CAPTURE, CREATE AND SHARE

The New COOLPIX S800c Enhances the User’s Connected Life, Letting Them Instantly Share Great Images From a Device That Includes Features Only a Camera Can Provide with the Ease and Versatility of a Smartphone or Tablet

MELVILLE, N.Y. (August 22, 2012) – Today, Nikon Inc. announced the innovative COOLPIX S800c, Nikon’s first Wi-Fi compact digital camera to incorporate Nikon’s powerful camera imaging technologies and the boundless capabilities of an Android Operating System (OS). Designed for the always connected individual, the S800c delivers the high picture quality and superior performance expected from a Nikon camera coupled with communication functions and app-based versatility of a smartphone or tablet.

The new S800c answers the call for users who need the ability to capture photos and HD video with amazing clarity and color, yet offers a familiar portal to connect to social networks and popular imaging applications through an Android Operating System. With the introduction of the S800c, beautiful images can now be confidently and quickly shared with friends and family.

“With the new COOLPIX S800c, Nikon designed a camera for users looking to capture stunning images and videos with a compact digital camera but also want to share their content with their friends and family in a familiar way,” said Bo Kajiwara, Vice President of Marketing, Planning and Customer Experience, Nikon Inc. “Now users can connect easily and instantly with their social networks through the wireless connection, and take advantage of the vast possibilities of the Android Operating System. The new S800c is truly the easiest way to share amazing images on the spot.”

Powerful Images Are What Connects Us

What sets the S800c apart from connected devices is the focus on the quality of images that people can share. Features such as the spectacular 10x NIKKOR zoom lens and the 16-megapixel CMOS sensor affords the ability to create photos and HD video with unrivaled sharpness and clarity, whether up-close or at a distance, even in challenging lighting conditions. The S800c helps users to create images they will be proud to share, while offering connectivity and additional benefits to users, including:

• Optical 10x Zoom NIKKOR Lens: covering from wide-angle 25-250mm, so either the largest group or action from afar is captured with clarity that can only be accomplished with a quality lens. Additionally, the lens is bolstered with Nikon’s VR optical image stabilization for blur-free photos and stable HD video, even while handheld.

• 16 Megapixel Backside Illuminated (BSI) CMOS Sensor: Much larger than the CCD sensor traditionally found in smartphones or tablets, this BSI CMOS sensor excels in challenging lighting conditions, and provides images with vivid colors, low noise and exceptional contrast and sharpness.

• Powered by Android: The camera’s connection features allow users to seamlessly connect, browse and upload to their social networks, including Google+™, Facebook and Twitter. Users can also take advantage of the full functionality of Android technology to surf the web or even download applications and games onto their S800c. Just like a smartphone or tablet device, the camera has the opportunity to run camera-specific photo and video applications, yet enables the various benefits of shooting with a real camera.

• Google Play™: The S800c provides access to a vast world of applications for games, productivity and personal communication/ email, including Nikon’s photo storage and sharing site, my Picturetown®. Users are also able to watch video downloaded from Google Play right on their camera.

• The Benefits of COOLPIX Camera Technology: With the EXPEED C2 processing engine, users will enjoy rapid response and speedy performance from their device. Additional benefits include the ability to use a camera flash to illuminate subjects, while continuous drive mode captures up to approximately 8 frames-per-second (up to three shots) to help ensure no moment will be missed. What’s more, a variety of scene modes and creative filters keep it fresh and let the user easily create stunning images.

• Full HD Video: The S800c makes it easy to capture Full HD 1080p HD video with amazing fidelity and sharpness, with full stereo sound. Video clips can be instantly uploaded to popular video sites such as YouTube™ and Vimeo®.

• Built in GPS: Ever wanted to track a weekend excursion or geo-tag a hard to find shooting spot? The GPS function enables recording of shooting location information on stills and movies.

Easy Settings, Easy Connection, Instant Gratification

Smartphone and tablet users will feel at home with the S800c’s familiar controls and operation, and will be able to easily navigate using the wide and bright 3.5-inch touchscreen OLED monitor. The camera will connect to the internet via granted access to any Wi-Fi network. Upon connection, the user will be prompted through an easy-to-understand set-up process, similar to that of other Android devices. The COOLPIX S800c also has the ability to connect through WPS for a fast and secure push-button connection. Additionally, when a Wi-Fi connection is not open or available, the camera can transmit images and videos wirelessly to a smartphone or tablet, allowing the user to share better images through a mobile network.

COOLPIX core technologies also make it easy for users to create share-worthy images. Various camera modes help the user achieve the greatest shot, whether it’s a macro shot of tonight’s cuisine or a scenic HDR shot of downtown, the image is instantly ready to share. For maximum creativity, the S800c has 18 filter effects, including the new Toy Camera effect, Pop and Super Vivid color filters, as well as Cross Process and Peripheral Darkening filters.

Price and Availability

The S800c will be available in September 2012 in both White and Black for a suggested retail price (SRP) of $349.95*. For more information about this COOLPIX camera, or other Nikon products, please visit www.nikonusa.com.

[Via 9to5Google]

Jeremiah Rice
Jeremiah is a US-based blogger who bought a Nexus One the day it came out and never looked back. In his spare time he watches Star Trek, cooks eggs, and completely fails to write novels.
  • sahilm

    THIS THING HAS WIFI? OH-SNAP, GAME CHANGER OVER HERE

    /s

  • tylerbrainerd

    Uh, number one problem: battery life.

    • theemptyshell

      No 3G/4G. Battery life won't be a problem.

    • GazaIan

      Android's biggest battery drain is the cell radio. With no cell radio and WiFi only on when you need it, battery life isn't a problem.

  • Spigaw

    Gingerbread, again and again... Who still uses it, seriously?

    • http://petercast.net Peterson Silva

      I'm stuck with Froyo =/

      My phone is bad and I should feel bad.

    • GazaIan

      It's primary use is to be a camera. As long as the camera can take 16MP Shots then what's the problem?

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Christopher-Alden/100000469737019 Christopher Alden

        At this price point, you're buying it because it's a camera that runs Android. If you're just looking for something to be a camera, you have more value-oriented options.

  • joker159

    I want to see a dslr type camera (the one that we can change lens) with android, any idea ? :DD

    • Cheeseball

      The question is if an appropriate ARMv7 SoC would work well with a dedicated, high-end CMOS sensor.

      • theemptyshell

        The two have nothing to do with each other.

        • GazaIan

          If you've seen Android's vanilla camera, then trust me he's right. Stock camera produces the worst photos I have ever seen. Sense camera does a much better job and Samsung camera is pretty nice too, but I hate Sense and TouchWiz.

          • joker159

            if it can be mirorless too, I will be dilighted :)

  • Astria

    honestly, it looks more like an Android media player with an optical zoom lens...

  • http://wave-france.blogspot.com Supercopter

    I'd be much more interested by Sony making an high-end "CyberShot" JB phone! After "Walkman" and "PlayStation" androphones, that sounds like a next logical step to me.

  • http://vertigokeyz.tumblr.com/ Keyz Karanza

    I see this as being the modern equivalent of the 3DO. Sure it is a fantastic device, but $350?!? That is way out of reach. I just bought an Olympus camera with slightly better specs for $150. You can get a cheap no-name android tablet for $75 (oh, okay. Let's just round up to $100). If the MSRP on this was $250, I think it would stand a chance. Just my 2 cents.

  • aatifsumar

    Are you sure there's a 3.5mm audio jack? I don't see one.

  • Mat

    The question is: Is someone going to walk into Wal-Mart and pay $350 for a point-and-shoot? The most expensive Nikon point-and-shoot at Wal-Mart is $170. Are Wi-Fi, 0.8" extra screen, and slightly better optics really worth doubling the price? Android probably adds to the cost just because they had to engineer the hardware to work with the OS, but that's a one time expense. I could see this camera as a good sell to Android fans around $300, and I think your average shopper would probably go for the "fancy android, game-playing, youtube-watching" camera at $250.

    Look at the Samsung Galaxy player. It has all this but the optics with a 5" screen and Best Buy can only squeeze $190 out of it. I think at $350, they're pricing themselves out of the low-end camera market and into the low-end tablet market. Problem is that no one wants a 3.5" tablet with Gingerbread (especially for $350).

  • Greyhame

    Not really interested. My phone suffices as a camera in a pinch, and if I want a real camera, it's going to be just that.

  • theemptyshell

    This isn't a "low end" camera. Just because it's a point and shoot doesn't mean it's low end. This camera would have been in the $350 range whether it had Android or not.

  • RedPandaAlex

    I'm more interested with access to the Play Store. There's a lot you can do with automatic uploads, sync etc that wouldn't be possible with just Android without store access.

  • Chris

    When you say low-end what do you mean? Low-end for Coolpix cameras or are you trying to compare it to a Nikon D2/3/4? I would think $350 price range is about middle of the road for point and shoot cameras. How does it compare with other cameras in the Coolpix line is what I would be interested in. I have a couple D2's already and would certainly love an android powered point and shoot even at $350 and No I won't be buying it at Walmart.

    And just because it's got Android on board doesn't mean it's going to take pictures like Android phones do. That would just be crazy. It should take pictures equal to other Coolpix cameras at least.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=667020551 Jose Torres

    ...something else for Android Police to review. Five years from now I can see us looking back at now at how we only cared about phones and tablets but reading about the latest OTA updates for our Android powered toothbrush.
    Get used to it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1745689461 Hal Motley

    I am certainly disappointed that the Android version isn't at least 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) because the jump from 2.3 (Gingerbread) to 4.0 is so severe to me that I won't jump back easily.

    I guess I'll have to look out for the official AP review, you will review this thing right?

    PS: Why doesn't anyone on this site care about the Raspberry Pi?

  • http://twitter.com/homncruse Aaron Burke

    I'm actually surprised it's not running Froyo. :-/ And no, I'm not being facetious. It's surprising how many of these "alternative" devices don't even come out with Gingerbread.