Remember that time when your smartphone camera just wasn’t good enough? That time when you wanted a picture that was just slightly better? You know, the time you lugged a pocket camera to your kid’s karate lesson or significant other’s colonoscopy. Well. Sony will soon have a product for you, friend!
The Sony QX10 and QX100 are leaking from all corners of the Internet following their surprise appearance last month. The products are essentially two-thirds of a camera designed to connect to a smartphone wirelessly or through a dock. Sony has created a whole new system that replaces a phone’s camera with a new sensor and glass. For better or worse, of course.
According to Sony Alpha Rumors, the QX10 will feature a 1/2.3-inch 18-megapixel sensor paired with an f/3.3-5.9 lens. The QX100 will have a high-quality 1-inch 20.2-megapixel Exmor R sensor and a f/1.8-4.9 Carl Zeiss lens. Reportedly, the QX10 will be $250 and the QX100 will be $450. The QX line is based on fantastic Sony point-and-shoot cameras with the QX10 looking most like the WX150 and the QX100 grabbing most of the RX100m2’s magic.
The concept is solid, but the market might be tepid. With the right software, a smartphone packs all the goods necessary to process a photo. These products essentially allow smartphones to capture higher-quality images and more importantly, share these images a whole lot quicker.
It’s just too bad these first-generation models are so expensive.
Let’s not forget this has been done before. Will.i.am and Fusion Garage (and CrunchPad engineer) Chandra Rathakrishnan beat Sony to this idea with the fashion-focused i.am+ foto.sosho V.5. But it doesn’t appear to have ever hit the market. Thankfully. It was ludicrous and smelled of vapor from the start.
Sony’s take is much more legitimate and original. As Chris explained when the products first started leaking online, Sony has created a product that moves the camera hardware outside of the smartphone, creating a platform that’s device-agnostic and gives consumers the option of using this device on future hardware.
Don’t expect these little lenses to be a huge hit right out of the gate. Sony probably doesn’t. This is clearly a low-volume product designed to test the market. But Sony as of late is back to its slow and steady product cycle. This product line is a clever cross between two of the company’s main product categories with mobile and digital imaging. Sony is going to do its damnedest to get consumers to carry a lens in their pocket instead of a pocket shooter.