It may not have been the best day to release a new compact camera, given that Panasonic announced five of them (if you count superzooms), but Samsung powered through anyway, unveiling its new addition to the compact world: the stylish looking MV900F. Unlike most of the compacts we’ve seen coming our way in the past month, this isn’t a technical powerhouse with a superfast lens or a huge sensor. What the MV900F offers is a bunch of cool, if not a little bit random, features that try to entice the everyday user away from their smartphone.
The hardware packed into the new compact is fairly standard: it houses a 16.3-megapixel CMOS sensor, a 5x optical zoom f/2.5 lens, shoots full 1080p HD video and has a 3.3-inch touchscreen that flips 180-degrees for self portraits (and can be used as a nifty stand, as Gizmodo pointed out). Where the camera tries to set itself apart is in the “cool but unnecessary” division.
Besides being WiFi enabled — allowing you to use your smartphone as a viewfinder and share easily to social networks — it can also be controlled by gestures from in front of the camera. Point the screen towards yourself to see what you’re doing and you can zoom-in or out using a circular motion and trigger the camera by moving your hand up and down twice.
You can also apply a number of customizations, scene modes and filters to your subjects that most other point-and-shoots don’t offer. In addition to typical filters you can add a fancy background, or even put a wig on your subject. And when it comes to scene modes there’s even a special multi-exposure mode that, rather than going for higher dynamic range, tries to yield the steadiest, least “noisy” shot.
It’ll be up to consumers to decide whether or not the features are worth the price, or the necessity to carry something other than a phone on you at all times. But if the answer turns out to be yes, then the they’ll be able to get their hands on a black, white, red or pink MV900F in August for $349. And if snazzy colors aren’t your think, you can already pre-order the black or white versions on B&H for the same price.