samsunglogo[CES 2014] As CES 2014, Samsung Digital Imaging is launching a number of cameras which all share a set of functions called Smart Features 3.0 by Samsung. This applies to all Samsung 2014 smart cameras (I believe that all new cameras ARE smart cameras) that do not run on Android. Yet, Android is not the only way when it comes to smart cameras. For instance, all the new Samsung smart cameras will have capabilities like web uploads, with Flickr and Dropbox being new services added this January.

NFC has also been added to the whole smart camera line-up and this is designed to facilitate photo exchanges with NFC-ready smartphones. And really shows what Samsung’s strategy is: people buy cameras because they want something that their smartphones cannot do. Whether it is higher battery life, more powerful zoom, faster auto-focus (AF) or better image sensors, there must be a clear added-value.

The second takeaway from this is that Samsung believes that most people interested by these Smart Cameras already have a decent smartphone. This also means that there is no urgent need for an internal cellular connectivity in the Camera, and that Samsung prefers to rely on a phone’s WiFi Hotspot. Company representatives have confirmed to Ubergizmo that their WiFi cameras have outperformed their LTE counterparts by far, so the public has spoken. Keep in mind that the current wireless carriers billing system does not make using connected devices easy or cheap. There is still a place for LTE cameras, but that’s for specific markets.

Smart Features 3.0 also has local wireless sharing options with Photo Beam and Group Share, two features that rely on local networking protocols like WiFi Direct to broadcast photos to friends and family. And because smart cameras are designed to work in tandem with smartphones, the Remote Viewfinder Pro feature will let users control their camera from a smartphone app.

Finally, one of the feature that stuck in our mind was the “Baby Monitor” function. You can use any of the Samsung Smart Cameras as a baby monitor which will send photos and relay sound if it senses motion or noise, just like a regular baby monitor. The idea is that you may bring your camera to a party, but when dinner time comes, it can be used to monitor the baby.

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