Second time’s the charm? Nikon revisits Android with the Coolpix S810C

[Update on April 10, 2014: We added new photos and updated specs info. We also corrected information regarding ISO.]

It has been nearly two years since Nikon introduced the Coolpix S800c, the first point-and-shoot “social camera” to incorporate the Android mobile operating system. One would presume, from the silence, that Nikon has abandoned the idea, leaving Samsung as the only other manufacturer to make camera-smart device hybrids. Well, you’d be wrong, as Nikon has unveiled a successor, the Coolpix S810c.

In terms of design, the S810c looks identical to the older camera (it’s larger by 0.1 inches, and 1.2 ounces heavier), and the guts aren’t far off: It uses a 16-megapixel 1/2.3-inch back-illuminated CMOS sensor, as did its predecessor. But the new connected camera now has a 12x optical zoom lens (25-250mm, 35mm equivalent) with an aperture range of f/3.5-6.1, versus the S810’s 10x zoom. The lens uses both lens-shift and electronic vibration reduction for steady images. The S810c also has Nikon’s new Dynamic Fine Zoom, a feature introduced earlier this year, in which the camera maintains a section of high image quality in the first 2x of digital zoom. ISO sensitivity has dropped to 125-1,600 except in Auto mode, where ISO maxes out at 3,200. The camera captures video up to Full HD 1080 at 30 frames per second, which remain unchanged. Burst mode also stays the same at 8 fps, up to three shots.

The screen is larger at 3.7 inches, but instead of the OLED technology used in the preceding model, the screen is now a standard WVGA LCD touchscreen; display resolution has increased to 1.2-million dots. Like all compact cameras, the S810c has plenty of creative modes, like Easy Panorama and Smart Portrait. Overall, these are slight improvements to the camera.


On the Android front, the S810c runs on Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean). Unlike Samsung’s Galaxy cameras, there’s no cellular option – just Wi-Fi, plus GPS for location tagging and an electronic compass. This means that the phone can’t always be connected, but you won’t have to worry about monthly cell service bills. When it is connected to Wi-Fi, however, you can upload photos directly to social-media sites by using their respective native apps, download photocentric Android apps to use with the camera, surf the Web, check email, watch HBO Go, or run any app as you would on an Android smartphone. Of course, because there’s no cell service, you won’t be able to use this as a traditional cell phone to make calls. When a Wi-Fi signal isn’t available, you can pair it with a smartphone as a bridge to upload photos online (using the Connect to S810c app), but no remote operation (a bit ironic, as it defies the S810c’s “connected” moniker).

The S810c now has a much-needed headphone jack, which not only allows you to listen to tunes or watch YouTube clips without bugging those around you, but listen to the audio while recording video. Nikon has also improved the battery life, now 260 shots versus 140. For storage, the S810c uses Micro SD instead of regular SD. Also new is a commenting feature that lets you add comments to photos by voice or keyboard.

Nikon will sell the camera for the same price as the outgoing model, at $350. The S810c will be available on April 24, in either black or white. 

As a first-gen product, the S800c received mixed reviews. Some thought Nikon simply put a compact point-and-shoot camera next to an Android smart device, without truly integrating the two products (the same argument could be said about Samsung’s Android cams). From the looks of it, integration hasn’t been improved here: It just offers a better camera and newer version of Android. Sure, you get a long optical lens – something smartphones don’t have – but it’s still a basic point and shoot. And since it doesn’t have cellular connectivity, it’s not as convenient as a smartphone. Will the additional specs be enough to set it off? We’ll wait and see.


To be blunt, the Vuzix Blade smartglasses just don’t cut it

We tried out the Vuzix Blade to find out if it’s worth shelling out $1,000 for smartglasses. Are these augmented reality, Android-powered glasses really ready for primetime or just an expensive gimmick that no one really needs?

Nikon will bring eye-detection autofocus to the Z6 and Z7 in May

An upcoming firmware update will bring Eye AF to the Nikon Z6 and Z7 -- along with improved autofocus performance in low light. The update will also give the cameras support for the CFexpress format.

You can now get Google Fi SIM cards straight from Best Buy

Google's wireless service known as Project Fi, now goes by the name of Google Fi. The company also announced the service is now compatible with a majority of Android phones, as well as iPhones. Here's everything you need to know about…

The Moto G4 Plus is finally getting the update to Android Oreo

We've reached out to every major Android hardware manufacturer and asked them when they will update their devices to the latest version of Google's mobile operating system, Android 8.0 Oreo.
Emerging Tech

The best drone photos from around the world will take your breath away

Most of today's drones come equipped with high-end cameras, which are quickly revolutionizing the world of aerial photography as we know it. Here are some of the best drone photos from around the world.

Using A.I., Lightroom can now boost the resolution of RAW photos

Need to eek a bit more resolution out of a RAW file? Adobe Lightroom and Camera Raw can help with a new feature called Detail Enhance. The tool uses A.I. in the demosaicing process to enhance details and reduce artifacts.
Product Review

Canon democratizes full-frame with the EOS RP, but keep your expectations low

At just $1,300, the RP is Canon's least expensive full-frame camera yet, but it was born into a world of high-end, high-cost lenses where it doesn't yet feel at home.

Tight on space? Here’s how to transfer photos from an iPhone to a computer

Never lose any of your cherished selfies or family vacation photos from your iPhone again by learning how to transfer photos from your iPhone to a computer, whether you want to use a cable or wireless transfer.

Corel VideoStudio adds tools for customizing color in simple video edits

VideoStudio is Corel's more consumer-oriented video editor but the software recently gained advanced color correction tools. The update adds custom transitions, along with speeding up performance, and adding new shortcuts.

500px reveals almost 15 million users are caught up in security breach

Almost 15 million members of portfolio website 500px have been caught up in a security breach. The hack occurred in 2018 but was only discovered last week. Users are being told to change their 500px password as soon as possible.

Olympus packs an enormous zoom ability in its latest interchangeable lens

The Olympus Digital ED M.Zuiko 12-200mm F/3.5-6.3 has the widest zoom range of any interchangeable lens with a 16.6x zoom. The lens, which covers a 24-400mm equivalent, is also weather sealed.

Nikon brings a classic workhorse lens to the Z series with new 24-70mm f/2.8 S

The Nikon Z series finally has a bright zoom available without an adapter. The Nikkor Z 24-70mm F/2.8 S offers new coatings and more customizable controls in a smaller, lighter body than the comparable F-mount lens.

Fujifilm’s X-T30 is a semi-pro, feature-rich camera that’s affordable to boot

Fujifilm's newest mirrorless camera delivers the premium features of the X-T3 without the premium price, giving aspiring enthusiasts a lower-cost option that can still match the image quality of Fuji's flagship.

Fujifilm XP140 squeezes more durability, low-light ability into a waterproof cam

Fujifilm's waterproof compact can now head even further underwater. The Fujifilm XP140 features several upgrades, including a more durable body, a wider ISO range for low light, and expanded auto modes.