As Android-based cameras start to hit the market, we find out how one model stacks up against the smartphone competition.
Three Android cameras have already been announced this year. Whether branded by Polaroid, Samsung or Nikon, each has a different specification and form factor. The underlying similarity, though, is the operating system. Connectivity has been a huge buzz-word for camera makers this year, and Android is just one of the solutions presented to make shooting and sharing photos much easier.
Does it make sense to buy a dedicated Android camera when smartphone cameras are perfectly good for most purposes? Time to find out.
|Nikon Coolpix S800c||Samsung Galaxy S3|
|16-megapixel CMOS sensor||8-megapixel backside-illuminated CMOS sensor|
|3.5-inch OLED touchscreen||4.8-inch super AMOLED touchscreen|
|10x optical zoom||No optical zoom|
|Wi-Fi, GPS||Wi-Fi, GPS, 3G/4G capable|
|25mm wide-angle lens, f/3.2-5.8||27mm wide-angle lens, f/2.6|
|Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)||Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)|
|1080/30p video recording||1080/30p video recording|
|184 grams||133 grams|
Apart from the advantages of an optical zoom and, possibly, the higher resolution afforded by the sensor, on paper, there doesn't seem to be much reason to choose the Android camera. So we decided to test both out to determine which was the best all-rounder, from usability to connectivity, as well as simply taking images.
Click through the gallery below for comparisons under a number of different everyday shooting situations. Note that there will be some slight variations in the photos because of the different focal length of the lenses at the wide end, and the higher resolution of the Nikon sensor.
While this isn't a scientific test, it provides a good idea of what to expect from both cameras. All images were taken on automatic settings in the case of the Galaxy S3, or Easy Automatic mode on the S800c.
If you would like to see a comparison between the Galaxy S3's camera and a number of other smartphones, click through here for a comparison gallery.