They don't run Android, and we're not sure if they even run Tizen OS, but a lineup of new smart cameras at CES represents Sammy's best efforts to elevate point-and-shoots to a higher state of technological being. (Hopefully before the entire genre of the "cheap camera" is wiped out by smartphones.) We're still lacking exact pricing and availability, alas, but the model numbers and specs hint at the essential hierarchy, starting with the huge WB2200F bridge camera with 60x zoom and going all the way down to the tiny WB35F with a 12x zoom. All the cameras come with WiFi and NFC for quick pairing to a smartphone or tablet; all deliver 16MP images as a bare minimum; and we'll take a moment to cover each one in a little more detail after the break.
This bridge camera sits at the head of the table, with a Back-Side Illuminated (BSI) sensor for improved low-light performance (at least compared to the regular CCD sensors lower down the lineup), 60x zoom with optical stabilization for ridiculously detailed shots of squirrels and usefully wide 20mm focal length at the other end of the zoom range. Aside from NFC and WiFi, other connectivity options come in the form of a full-sized SD slot and HDMI output. In addition to the big 75mm LCD, a dual-grip design stands out as being unusual for this category of camera, and it makes room for a bigger battery that Samsung promises will allow users to "indulge their passion [for photography] for longer periods of time than ever before."
On the face of it, this camera delivers much the same feature set as the WB2200F, but with a smaller 35x zoom that brings the weight down to 462 grams (as measured, conveniently, without the battery), instead of 608 grams. But there are other sacrifices to be made: the sensor is a non-BSI CCD, plus there's only 720p video recording (instead of 1080p) and no HDMI output.
This looks to be an updated (and hopefully cheaper) hybrid of last year's Galaxy Camera and WB850F, without Android, but with the same 21x zoom, 16MP BSI sensor and max ISO of 3200 -- all of which suggests that picture quality should actually be pretty decent. We've got the same-sized LCD as the WB220F, but now with touch sensitivity. We also have the same connectivity features, but here housed in a camera that weighs 216 grams, which suggests this could be the most mainstream offering of the lot.
WB35F and WB50F
This is the smallest of the bunch, at 144 grams and just 10 centimeters wide. Aside from the difference in form factor, with just a 12x zoom lens here, most features and specs are similar to the WB1100F. Also the SD slot is replaced by microSD, which may actually be more convenient for sharing to other mobile devices. Finally, the WB50F is billed as a "child-friendly" alternative to the WB35F, with a slightly more rugged build that slightly adds to the weight.