Would you buy a camera running Android?

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from  Arizona
| August 21, 2012

We've talked about consolidating devices before. It's the rational thing to do if you love available space in your bag, or you don't like to have things hanging around your neck, or stuffing your pockets. Merging your favorite devices into one makes everything just so much easier to use, even if it does sometimes mean you forsake your battery. Still, I'll always prefer to have one device that does it all, rather than carry around multiple devices.

But, when we've talked about consolidating devices, we've always made sure that the focus is on the phone. The phone comes first, and all those other things are just bonuses tucked into a nice package. But that isn't always the case, is it? There are some phones out there that have other features that mean the most to potential buyers.

Like Nokia's 808 PureView. And it would probably be the same for HTC, if they ever manage to launch that rumored device with an 16MP camera. In those specific cases, the camera speaks louder than any other feature on the phone, even the phone part.

So what if we turned it around? Essentially we'd be looking at the same exact situation as with the 808 PureView, but the phone part would be completely removed from the equation. Instead, we'd have to focus on other features, like a Browser, messaging apps, and other similar apps. But, what's the main device?

A camera.

Earlier today, DroidDog reported on a leaked document uncovered by Nikon Reports. The document pointed to a new camera from Nikon, the Coolpix S800c. It's actually been rumored before, but these documents suggest that the camera could get announced very, very soon. The reason it's interesting, though, isn't so much the camera technology shoved inside, but the operating system that Nikon decided to install.

Android. To be specific, it looks like Android 2.3 Gingerbread is pre-installed out of the box. (I wouldn't expect it to get updated to anything else. Would you?) There are pictures of the device having app icons for the Browser, camera (surprise!), Music, Email, and more. All of which you can obviously find on any Android-based device out there.

I'm honestly curious if this is something that people would want. Is an Android-powered camera worthwhile to anyone? Should it become the new standard for cameras moving forward? With a rumored 3.5-inch OLED touchscreen on the back of the camera, along with built-in WiFi and GPS, it's practically like you shoved a phone into the back of a full-fledged camera anyway.

As I've said, I'm all for consolidating devices. It makes sense for me, just as it does for plenty of other people out there. And, I fully understand where you're coming from if you've bought (or still plan to buy) an 808 PureView from Nokia, because that camera is amazing. I know where people are coming from when they buy a new phone for one other particular feature, not necessarily banking on the phone's phone functionality. All of that makes sense to me.

But, an Android-powered camera? I'm not getting the point. It is cool that Android is finding its place in other devices, but that's about as far as it goes for me. Maybe it's because I don't necessarily want a stand-alone camera. Or, maybe it's because when I get a stand-alone camera, the operating system inside of it isn't going to be the part that I focus on.

Then again, in the case of this particular Nikon, having a 3.5-inch OLED touchscreen display on the back of a full-fledged camera running Android 2.3 may not be a bad thing at all. It'd be better if Google Talk could send images, though.

So let me know, Dear Reader. Would you pick up an Android-based camera? Or, casting the net a bit wider, would you buy a camera based on another mobile platform? Like iOS or Windows Phone? Let me know.