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Digital Camera News: Kodak Delays EasyShare One, Thin Lens Technology. Printing from a Camera Phone
by Ben Stafford -  5/23/2005

Kodak Delays Shipment of EasyShare One

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Kodak is delaying the shipping date of the Kodak EasyShare One WiFi-equipped digital camera.  The camera will now be shipping in October instead of the previously announced June roll out.

Kodak has not given a specific reason for the delay, saying only that they're "taking the time to do it right".  The delay of the $699 camera will not affect Kodak's earnings since it will ship before the holiday season.

Lenses Five Times Thinner Than a Sheet of Paper

Researchers in Quebec have devised a process that can create extremely thin lenses.  They claim that the advances in the lenses will allow pictures to be taken very clearly by not having to resort to digital zoom.  Also, it will change the form factor of small cameras and camera phones.

From an article at the Register:

The researchers added a small amount of a light-sensitive monomer to the liquid crystal in a conventional electro-optic cell. When the liquid crystal is stimulated by a laser, the monomers are stimulated to form a polymer network, with a density proportional to the amount of light falling on the surface. This also affects the orientation of the liquid crystals, and the refractive index of the cell.

By precisely controlling the laser profile, the researchers are able to make the cell act like a lens. Varying the voltage across the lens, the researchers could change the focal length of the lens, because this alters its refractive index. By increasing the applied voltage from 1.5 to 4.5 volts, the team was able to vary the focal length by a factor of five.

Rollei Announces the Prego dp6000 Digital Camera

The big news about the Prego dp6000 digital camera is that it features a large 2.5 inch LCD and an optical viewfinder that has a diopter adjustment.  The rugged camera also has a 6.35 megapixel CCD, 3x optical zoom, and 4.4x digital zoom.

The macro mode allows you to get as close as 9 cm to your subject and the auto-focus functions from 0.8 cm to infinity.  This camera also allows you to record images on the SD memory in TIFF format (at 2816 x 2112 pixels).

Manual options include single-frame or continuous shooting (five frames), bracketing ( 0.67EV) or self-timer with 2 or 10-second delay. Shooting modes range from programmed AE or Av and TV to manual, portraits, action or night program.

The built-in flash unit has an effective range of 0.6 -- 3.0 m (Wide/ISO 200) and can be set to either Auto, Off, Forced or Red-eye Reduction. For natural color rendition even in critical lighting conditions, the Prego dp600 offers white-balance options of Auto, Manual, Daylight, Cloudy, Tungsten as well as Fluorescent 1 and 2. Exposure compensation can likewise be controlled automatically or manually in 1/3 incremetns over 2.0 EV.

 Recommended retail price: Euro 279, incl. VAT
Availability: Early June 2005

PMA Report on Printing from Camera Phones

The Photo Marketing Association will soon be releasing a report titled: "2005 PMA U.S. Consumer Photo Buying Report". For now, we just get a taste.  At the end of 2004, 10.2 percent of households owned a camera phone.  However, they were not using camera phones to print as much as camera manufacturers and cellular data providers would like.  The top reasons for not printing pictures from the camera phone were:

  1. No need to print (44%)
  2. Just wanted to look at the camera screen (42%)
  3. Picture quality too poor (35%)
  4. Prefer my regular camera (27%)

See the PMA website for the full article.