Thursday, January 16, 2014

From Polaroid to Android: Socialmatic Camera

The Polaroid themed Socialmatic camera is going to be a reality according to the latest announcements from CES in Las Vegas. It will run on Android, have a built in ZINK printer and social sharing through Wifi. It also has a spiffy 14 megapixel sensor to boot.

The camera will debut sometime this year and priced at US$299. Before you order one online, you have to ask yourself if you really need another camera like this.

The SX-70 it is Not

ZINK products are great, but the image quality is less than stellar. The 2X3 prints are at best...pedestrian even though it is cheap. Its streaky finish and muted colors are far from the quality you'd get from a real Polaroid camera loaded with Impossible Project Film.

It runs on Android, which means you could run a whole host of apps and with the built in GPS, it could even help to get you home when you are lost in the woods.

Small Prints, Small Subjects

Here's another clue to what ZINK instant photos is all about. The small size print is probably ideal for portraits and little else. You may want to shoot some scenic images, street photos and close ups but having them printed for all to see on paper would be another kettle of fish. We don't know for sure about the lens specification but I reckon it will be in the ballpark of 29mm.

ZINK printers can't reproduce the details captured with a 14 megapixel sensor. The idea behind it is great but you still need a Wifi connection to share photos to Instagram. The built in Bluetooth capability will go some way to addressing that need should you need to beam the photos to your Smartphone.

Personally, I can't seem to find a way to fit this gadget into my shooting style. I need a camera that is basically more capable than the one I have on my phone and to ante up to a camera that doesn't quite fulfill that need makes me wonder if the whole concept was designed to extort money from fashion victims.

However if you happen to fall into that category, then there will be no stopping you from getting one. 


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