I think this Gawker commenter sums it up about as best as this announcement for the new “Polaroid Socialmatic Camera” can be summed up: “So a company that discontinued its iconic cameras/film saw that a smartphone app that digitally replicated its iconic photo look raked in big profits, and is now replicating a replica. Of itself. Good job.”
Actual product specs are forthcoming in the next few months, but as you can see in the concept mock-ups below, the plan (for now) still retains the Instagram-ish icon design. Assuming Polaroid doesn’t mess around with the concept specs, the Socialmatic could have a 4.3-inch touchscreen, 16GB of internal storage, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, interchangeable lenses, LED flash, a built-in printer and support for different kinds of ink cartridges. The original Socialmatic camera concept also wanted to include QR codes on each printed picture to make following users and sharing printed pics to social networks easier.
Until we get more details, we have no idea if the Socialmatic will be a single-purpose camera built specifically to shoot, print and share Instagrams like the original concept. It’s possible the Socialmatic will connect to other social networks as well. At the right price and with the right balance of features, we think the Socialmatic has real potential.
As much as I want to pile on and make fun of this — Polaroid deserves the scorn after hiring Lady Gaga to be its creative director — I will probably think hard about buying one of these when they’re released early next year. Hell, I’m ready to throw money at my screen just looking at the damn thing.