Remember the Galaxy Camera, the camera with Android on it that was released in 2012? Samsung is getting ready to release a new one, according to @evleaks. The old one wasn’t very exciting, because it just didn’t seem that good as a camera, especially for its high price. We don’t have much go on for the new Galaxy Camera right now, other than a test shot from it, which is not a particularly great one. In fact it looks like a picture that was taken by mistake while moving the camera around:
The old Galaxy Camera had the same processor as the Galaxy S3, 16MP sensor, 21x optical zoom, and Xenon flash. Then the Galaxy S4 Zoom was released, but unfortunately it still looked a little bulky, and it had the same 16MP sensor, only 10x zoom, and this time only a dual core processor. Suffice to say that this one wasn’t very successful either. Either it’s Samsung that can’t get it right, or this is just a very hard problem. But if they were to do it right, what would it take?
For starters, Samsung needs to have its spec base at least what the Lumia 1020 has in terms of sensor size and overall quality of the camera module. So it needs a 1/1.5″ sensor, or larger. 40 MP may not be necessary, if they can achieve the same results or better with only 20 MP (or can improve low-light/performance). Xenon and OIS are obviously required, and I’m sure it will have them. It needs Carl Zeiss lenses or better. There are some cutting edge lens technologies that it would pay off to learn about, too.
The camera should be as slim as possible – phone-like slim – and have a great design, too. Ultimately, it needs a great price – say $300 at most. If they could hit $250, that would get them a lot more free press, but I’m afraid Samsung is chasing high profits a little too much lately, so they probably won’t do that.
In the end, it may be just too hard to succeed with a camera at this level, when smartphones are so close in camera performance. Samsung’s efforts would be better focused on putting all of that camera technology on top of the Galaxy S5. That’s the future of all sub-$500 cameras, and Samsung could benefit from being one of the first to accelerate that trend, rather than trying to keep the point and shoot camera market alive.