Polaroid iM1836

$299 gets you an entry-level Micro 4/3 camera with Android on-board

The last time we laid eyes on the Polaroid iM1836 it was at CES in January with some non-working demo units, but now you can actually plunk down some cash for one at retailers. The entry-level Micro 4/3 camera is coming in at just $299 with a 10-30mm kit lens, $50 less than was expected based on its initial launch details.

For that price you're getting the aforementioned kit lens, along with a glossy plastic body, an 18.1MP sensor, basic controls and a 3.5-inch touchscreen. That screen will give you access to Android 4.1 running on this device, which should open up the possibilities of sharing and photo creation. The iM1836 also has Bluetooth and Wifi, naturally, giving you access to Google Play to download apps but also to transfer images between the camera and your phone.

On the optical side, Polaroid is claiming "DSLR quality," but at this price point we're not so certain how much it can offer. Specs say it can offer 1080p video, which is nice, but on stills the iM1836 only offers up to ISO 3200 which gives you an indication of the quality of the sensor — and for what it's worth Polaroid isn't being too specific about the detailed specs. Because it is built on the Micro 4/3 format, the possibilities of using a vast range of higher-quality lenses may increase what this camera is capable of.

If you're willing to spend the $299 and give this one a shot, Amazon is listing the camera now with a shipping time of "2 to 5 weeks," and Polaroid says that it will also be making its way to Walmart stores as well.

More: Buy the Polaroid iM1836 camera on Amazon

Source: Polaroid (PRNewswire)

 
There are 22 comments

brendilon says:

Too little too late, sadly. Polaroid was a great company once.

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TheDu9du says:

No no, I think Polaroid still has a shot*. don't be negative*.

TheDu9du says:

Shake it* off

TheDu9du says:

You should clean your lenses* to see there are a collage* of possibilities for Polaroids with android.

Can some one carry on pun-ing this guy, it's still too early for me to come up with stuff.

brendilon says:

I suppose we should see what develops...

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TheDu9du says:

Yes let's not be Polaroid about failure.

TheDu9du says:

We should focus on the benefits of this new product

Kic360 says:

I actually saw this camera at my local Walmart.

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Paul Hulford says:

Really? What was it priced at? What state are you in?

pagger says:

Missed the boat !

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Jaredshoes says:

This is better than what Samsung did IMO maybe not spec wise and performance wise but the package is going to be way more appealing to the crowd that would appreciate real cameras that have android

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I would argue that someone who appreciates "real" cameras would lean more towards what the Galaxy NX is offering than this.

Jaredshoes says:

I think if someone is gonna drop 1600 on a camera it won't be the Galaxy NX

Impulses says:

Definitely not, that NX model is grossly overpriced even compared to other high end mirrorless bodies like the Olympus EM5/EP5 or Panasonic GX7/GM1.

Impulses says:

Android on a camera is still a bit of a gimmick until someone comes up with a credible API and/or a more attractive reasoning for it than simply "Instagram on your camera!"... Camera UI and software are usually a finely honed balance, even on cameras with touchscreens (particularly late model Canons & Panasonics), and most pure Android based attempts do nothing but ruin that.

My M4/3 Panasonic has wifi and NFC on board; it couldn't be simpler to get the photos to my phone (where they're easier to share), all it takes is a single tap, and remote control from the phone is similarly sleek. Now if someone were to come up with an open model and a usable API that gives developers a large degree of control over sensor readout etc, that'd have interesting possibilities.

TommyQ94 says:

For me the benefit would be drop box auto-upload but otherwise wouldn't much other use for it

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Yes I can finally root my camera!

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It's great to see Android becoming more popular on Cameras. A little trivia: in 2004, Android Inc. (Before Google acquired) was originally going to be for Cameras! But the market wasn't there so they worked to create the Android we know/love.

Posted via Android Central App on my Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 (Android 4.2.2)

suredrift says:

I'm looking to get the Canon EOS M mirrorless camera. That camera has the same sensor and internals of the Canon 650D. Brilliant lowlight performance and stunning photos, not to mention its awesome videos feature plus its just $330+ on Amazon with the zoom lens.

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suredrift says:

I'm looking to get the Canon EOS M mirrorless camera. That camera has the same sensor and internals of the Canon 650D. Brilliant lowlight performance and stunning photos, not to mention its awesome videos feature plus its just $330+ on Amazon with the zoom lens.

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Impulses says:

It's also got a grand total of two native lenses so you lose all the size advantage the moment you wanna use any other lens, as you'd resort to bulkier EF-S lenses (a DSLR's), and AF was pretty dodgy at launch tho reportedly it's been improved...

It's not a bad camera for the price, there's just much better mirrorless models unless you already have some Canon lenses (any M43 from Olympus/Panasonic or even Sony NEX bodies)... Canon's APS-C sensor from the 650D isn't exactly high tech either. Again, it's not a bad sensor, plenty of people are happy with Canon's low to midrange DSLR after all... But they've been using that same sensor across their entire APS-C line for years and it's long overdue for an upgrade.

The Sony sensors used by Nikon/Pentax/Sony and even Olympus on the slightly smaller M43 format (along with some Panasonic/Toshiba sensors) have actually surpassed the low light abilities of that Canon sensor a while ago.

The EOS-M got a pretty lukewarm reception for a reason, it was a pretty half hearted attempt by Canon... Now, once they shift the dual pixel tech and sensor from the 70D unto an M model, THAT will be news and will possibly shake up the market (as long as they commit to releasing a few other native lenses).

I'd go for a Panasonic GX1 if you're on a small budget, has been as low as $250-300... Though something more modern albeit with the same sensor isn't much more expensive if you catch the right sale. You can knock the GF6 down to $450 at DPR Gearshop if you make a gear list, the kit zoom it comes with is the best kit zoom they've made for M43 and also one of the smallest. (barely larger than my Olympus 45mm and that's one of the smallest non-pancake primes)

You lose a hotshoe and maybe a control point or two but gain sweep pano, capacitive tilting touchscreen (great for spot focus), NFC/Wifi, better low light AF, etc.

olagon says:

Isn't this sensor inside of the lens? If so I'm not sure how this can be a Micro 4/3 camera if you can exchange other similar lenses.