The Japanese electronics giant, Panasonic, quit making smartphones after the failure of its Eluga-branded handset two years ago, but now it seems to be making a come back. The company launched its first Android-powered camera-phone, the Lumix DMC CM1 at the Photokina 2014 show in Germany.
The Panasonic CM1 sports a 4.7 inch 1080p screen, a 20-megapixel sensor with an f/2.8 Leica DC Elmarit lens. Panasonic has managed to pack a 1-inch sensor into the camera, which is extremely big for a smartphone, yet at par with what you’d find inside Sony’s RX100 and Nikon’s 1 series of cameras.
It can shoot 4K video, though only at 15fps, it is a new feature that is only available in high-end smartphones like Samsung Galaxy S5, Sony Xperia Z3, and Moto X. 1080p videos are recorded at 30fps. In fact, it looks more like a camera than a phone.
The Panasonic smartphone is equipped with 2.3GHz quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage, a microSDXC slot for expandable storage up to 128GB. The Lumix DMC-CM1 runs on Android KitKat out-of-the-box and use LTE networks.
The camera measures about the width and height of a regular smartphone, 135.4x68mm, but it’s thicker at 15.2mm. At its thickest part, with the lens pulled in, it measures 21.1mm. It weighs 204 grams.
Panasonic is clearly hoping the Lumia CM1 will be very capable camera that also comes with communication capabilities rather than as a smartphone with great imaging.
According to Panasonic reports, the CM1 will hit the shelves in France and Germany this November at a price of around 900 euros. Plans to make the device available in other nations haven’t been announced yet, as Panasonic may want to see how well the Smart Camera CM1 performs in the aforementioned two countries before taking it elsewhere.