Samsung's New Camera Steals a Page From the Flip

Samsung PL90 point-and-shoot camera
Though its basic specs aren't jaw-dropping, the just-announced Samsung PL90 packs a surprise twist for a point-and-shoot camera: It offers a pop-out USB connector that lets you offload files and charge the battery without having to use a cable.

The PL90's built-in USB connector and embedded media-management software--which automatically installs once you plug the camera into a computer's USB port--are features that we've seen on our fair share of pocket camcorders. But it's the first time we can remember seeing either of those things on a point-and-shoot still camera.

Beyond the new features, the PL90's specs are about in line with those of your average sub-$200 point-and-shoot camera, including a 12-megapixel sensor, a 4X optical zoom range, a 2.7-inch LCD screen, and a frame that measures just 0.7 inch deep.

Samsung PL90 point-and-shoot camera

The video resolution falls short of that from most of the pocket camcorders and cameras we've seen lately. The PL90 will shoot 640-by-480 standard-definition video at either 30 or 15 frames per second. Though that isn't high-definition, it is good enough quality to serve up a decent YouTube clip.

Like most low-end cameras, the PL90 doesn't provide the benefit of manual controls. In-camera modes include Smart Auto mode, motion-tracking autofocus, and a "Perfect Portrait System" that combines face detection, a smile-triggered shutter, blink detection, and red-eye reduction.

The Samsung PL90 is slated for September release at just $150.

Visit our Fall Camera Roundup page for information about recent announcements from Samsung and other big-name companies.

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