In late 2012, Samsung released the Galaxy Camera, a point-and-shoot that had two features everyone thought was silly at the time: it ran on Android and came and built-in Wi-Fi (3G and 4G LTE models were also introduced later). This two-punch combo proved to be widely popular with users, since it allowed them to share high-quality photos at 16-megapixels and edit them using any Android app with the speed and ease of a smartphone interface most already knew how to use.
To kick off a new year, Samsung went ahead and revealed the Galaxy Camera 2 with faster guts and easier sharing features. The Galaxy Camera 2 still has a 16-megapixel 1/2.3-inch BSI CMOS sensor, 21x optical zoom lens, and the same large 4.8-inch display with 1280 x 720 resolution (no 1080p here), but it should be faster thanks to improved hardware and newer software. It has a faster 1.6GHz quad-core processor (up from 1.4GHz), 2GB of RAM (up from 1GB), and a bigger battery 2000mAh battery (up from 1650mAh), which is expected to last up to 400 shots. Android 4.3 Jelly Bean also adds a nifty feature iPhone 5s users have been enjoying: 120 frames per second slow-motion video recording.
In addition to more speed and longer shooting time, the Galaxy Camera 2 also has twice the amount of internal storage (8GB) compared to its predecessor (4GB), so you have more room to store your pics. And just like the bonus on the Galaxy NX, Samsung's teamed up with Dropbox to give out 50GB of cloud storage for the first two years. Of course, you can still expand storage via a microSD card slot (up to 64GB). NFC is also now included to keep up with the times.
The Galaxy Camera 2 isn't just an internal speed bump. It now looks a lot prettier, too. The original Galaxy Camera looked and felt like a cheap toy. The new Galaxy Camera 2 keeps the plastic, but the overall camera looks sleeker and more premium thanks to its retro design and faux-leather texture body front, which also adds better grip. It's also a tad slimmer, but you probably won't notice the difference.
Samsung didn't announce pricing or release date, but we expect the camera to cost in the same ballpark as the previous model, somewhere around $450. We'll see if we can dig up some more info at CES next week.