We don't usually traffic in leaks and rumors, but this one's been getting more interesting and more plausible almost by the minute. Several sites reported earlier today that Kodak was preparing to launch a new 24x ultrazoom at CES, and Engadget has followed up on those rumors this afternoon with a press release, dated January 8, that seems to confirm the existence of the Kodak EasyShare Z980.
Obviously, we don't have any embargoed information with which to confirm Engadget's find at the moment (else we wouldn't be reporting on this story...), but if the posted press release is legit, the Z980 will be a 12 megapixel camera with a 24x, 26mm wide-angle lens and HD video capture capability.
Assuming the press release is genuine, the Z980 will also feature – in an unusual move – a detachable, DSLR-style battery grip and vertical shutter release.
Per the post, Kodak is also allegedly prepping a new compact camera, the M380 (and potentially some M-series siblings as well), for launch this week. In both cases, the uncovered press release cites a spring retail release for the new models.
For the moment, at least, the Z980 and M380 have yet to show up on Kodak's official site. Assuming all of this information bears out, though, we'll follow up with an official product announcement and detailed specs once Kodak gives the go-ahead.
If the Z980 is actually what Kodak has up its sleeve for CES, it may prove to be most exciting show in recent memory for the manufacturer.
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