It looks like Sony is on to something when they released the QX10 and QX100 lens cameras last year. At CES 2014, JK Imaging, which carries the Kodak brand, and Vivitar showcased their own versions of the Sony QX-style devices.
Dubbed as “Smart Lenses”, the Kodak SL10 and SL25 are like cheap versions of the Sony variants. The former is the less expensive (at $200) and features a 10x 28-280mm equivalent zoom lens, 1080p video, a microSD slot, and Wi-Fi for connecting to its iOS and Android app.
The Kodak SL25 is pricier at $300 and comes with no other distinguishing features other than its 25x 24-600mm equivalent zoom lens.
Vivitar, on the other hand, only unveiled a single type of lens camera at the recent CES event: the ViViCam IU680. Unlike Sony’s and JK Imaging’s products, Vivitar opted with a smartphone snap-on that lets you switch lenses.
This means that the Vivitar IU680 uses a mounting system that allows you to use your existing lenses for your smartphone camera. However, there’s no word yet on what type of mount Vivitar is going to use.
And get this, the IU680 also comes with a removable pop-up flash on top, complete with its own battery.
Again, details are scarce on the Vivitar IU680. So we’ll have to wait for the complete specs, price, and availability in the coming weeks or months. On the up side, they have a lot of product photos.
It’s exciting to find out which camera company is going to unveil another version of these lens cameras. But pundits are still wondering: Is it a lens, or a camera? What do you think?