LAS VEGAS -- 2013 may be a tipping point for connected cameras, and Samsung's 2013 point-and-shoot lineup is a testament to that fact. The majority of the company's new cameras announced today offer built-in Wi-Fi capabilities for sharing photos directly from the camera and pairing up with mobile devices. Across the board, this might be the year where we see more connected cameras than "normal" models.
Like the interchangeable-lens, Wi-Fi-enabled Samsung NX300 announced last week, each of the new Samsung Smart cameras will be compatible with a new mobile app for Android and iOS that combines wireless uploading features and peer-to-peer sharing of photos and videos with paired mobile devices. Two new features include the ability to offload photos to Android smartphones while they're locked, as well as Mac OS X support for the connected cameras.
There's nothing as earth-shattering as the company's Android-powered Galaxy Camera in Samsung's early 2013 lineup, but there are a couple of notable long-zoom models.
The highest-end of the lot is the Wi-Fi-enabled WB800F, which has a 16-megapixel backside-illuminated (BSI) CMOS sensor, a 21X-optical-zoom lens, full manual exposure controls, 1080p video capture, and a 3-inch touchscreen interface. It's due early this year for $300. Its little brother, the WB250F ($250), sports the same wireless features, an 18X-optical-zoom lens, and a 14-megapixel BSI CMOS sensor, but it lacks the manual controls of the WB800.
Another notable addition to the lineup is a new Wi-Fi-enabled Dual View camera, which has a secondary LCD screen on the front of the camera for composing self portraits. Its 5X-optical-zoom lens has a maximum aperture of F2.5, which is a rare feature for a $150 camera.
One of Samsung's new camcorders also boasts Wi-Fi features; the HMX-QF30, which is due early in the year for $330, has a live-streaming feature that will allow you to use it as a remote home-monitoring system. The 1080p-shooting QF20 is also compatible with Samsung's mobile app for controlling the camcorder via a mobile device and offloading content wirelessly, and it has a switchable grip to accomodate lefties and righties alike.
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