Panasonic has announced the successor to their Lumix CM1 Android smartphone/ camera combo, the Lumix CM10. Right off the bat Panasonic have made one major change to the new model in that it no longer supports phone capabilities, thus making the CM10 a standalone Android Smart Camera, Android OS has come full circle!
In our review of the original CM1 Geoff noted that as a phone the device would mainly appeal to a very specific subset of smartphone buyers. However, as an Android Smart Camera Panasonic may just have expanded their addressable market to a whole new group, it will all hinge on their retail price.
I for one have been looking for a point and shoot compact camera that I can install Google Photos on. This would allow me to shoot any photos I want and then when I get back into WiFi range those images just magically appear on Google Photos. Add to that the ability to sync to local storage via Wifi as well and you have a compelling use case for some Android users.
The Lumix CM10 is packing:
- 1″ 20.1 mp high-sensitivity MOS sensor
- LED Flash
- ISO 125 – 12800
- 4.7″ FHD (1920 x 1080) TFT display
- RAW + JPEG
- 4K Video, MP4
- Stereo Microphone
- Micro SIM
- 4G (Cat 4 LTE) FDD Bands 1,3,4,5,7,8,20
- 3G Bands 1,4,5,7
- 2G 850,900,14800,1900
- WiFi 802.11 Dual Band a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC, GPS
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 Quad Core CPU
- 2GB RAM
- 16GB Internal Storage – with Micro SD
- Android 5.0 lollipop
- Micro USB + 2.5 mm Headphone jack
- 2600mAh internal battery ~ approximately 300 shots
- 135.4mm x 68mm x 21.1mm @ 204g
For a new smartphone, some of those specs may be a little 2014, however, for a device who’s primary function is a camera with some smart connectivity perhaps they will be enough. Certainly in our review, Geoff didn’t find the device lacking. Another concern may be the version of Android that the device is running.
With security being an ever present concern a device such as this would be authorized to access a large number of online services from your google account to Twitter, Dropbox, Instagram etc. As such it could be a vector for an attack that should be as secure as possible. It will be interesting to see if the CM10 receives regular security updates as many other Android-powered devices now are.
At the time of publishing, we didn’t have an international RRP on the device, however, with the CM1 coming in at an RRP of $999 AUD it’s successor could well be in that same price range. This may be where the CM10 will struggle. The use case will have to be very strong for many users to pay almost $1000 for a second Android-powered device to purely take photos, especially with the likes of the LG G4 and the latest line of Samsung’s S6 and Note line devices having excellent cameras, not to mention the imaging prowess of the Nexus 6P.
That said if the Lumix CM10 can provide consistently reliable point and shoot photography where you can be confident of getting a great image in most lighting conditions even with moving subject matter then for those who want the connected photography experience this device very well may meet the mark.
As yet we do not have details on Australian availability or pricing, we will update this post when we get those details.
Do you have a use for an Android powered Smart Camera?