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Polaroid SC1630 Smart Camera with Android: hands-on

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Impressions of the Polaroid SC1630 Smart Camera, which fuses a pocket-sized Android device with a point-and-shoot camera that can wirelessly print out snapshots over Bluetooth.

polaroid smart camera
polaroid smart camera

The Polaroid SC1630 Smart Camera is a curious beast or a natural progression, depending on how you look at it — with smartphones obviating the need for point-and-shoot cameras for many people, the company is gambling that grafting the two together might find some success. The Smart Camera runs an unspecified version of Android on a 3.2"-inch screen, with the browser, apps (from Google's Android Market) and music-playing functions that you might expect in a pocket-sized device, but the rear is dedicated to a 16-megapixel camera with 3x optical zoom. Tapping into the company's instant photography legacy, it can link up via Bluetooth to the GL10 Instant Mobile Printer for quick snapshot printing. It's a pretty original product, but we weren't much impressed with any particular aspect of it — the hardware feels cheap and plasticky, the software is slow, and neither the photos nor printing of them are up to the standards of competing smartphones or instant shooters. Let alone a Polaroid Land Camera.