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The Polaroids of CES 2014

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Ailing photography pioneer Polaroid makes a comeback at CES 2014 with a pair of surprises-- the long awaited retro-styled Socialmatic camera and the C3, an wide-angle action camera inside a small cube.

SocialmaticThe Socialmatic has been a long time coming. It started off as a 2012 concept for a modern take on classic instant-print cameras, before Polaroid actually took up the idea to make an actual camera. And like the concept, it still combines a 14MP digital camera with a Zero Ink (ZINK) printer inside a likeable square-shaped package.

It also features a rear-facing 2MP shooter, 4GB internal storage (expandable via microSD card) and connectivity via wifi and Bluetooth. Control comes through a square 4.5-inch touchscreen, with Android as OS.

The ZINK printer produces 5x7cm colour sticker photos-- no shaking required, since prints are fully developed. Photos also carry a QR code for easy scanning, moving and printing by other devices.

The other equally interesting CES 2014 reveal from Polaroid is the C3, a tiny soft-touch (3.5mm) cube that's actually an action sports camera. It packs a 120-degree lens, a 5MP sensor, 2GB internal storage (expandable via microSD), microphone and LED light.

Taking photos or video (in 1280x720 or 640x480 resolution) simply involves pressing a button on top.

Both Socialmatic and C3 cameras should start shipping from Q3 2013 in a variety of colours. By then we will also learn how good the photos produced by these devices are, seeing how the models seen at Polaroid's CES 2014 stand are actually non-functional prototypes...

Go Polaroid at CES 2014