updated 09:00 am EDT, Tue August 26, 2008
Canon PowerShot E1
Rather than simply update its existing models, Canon on Tuesday launched an entirely new camera series. The 10-megapixel PowerShot E1 and future E cameras are aimed at a younger audience with a soft, rounded camera body and a large, easy to understand button interface at the back. The camera has a full hands-off Easy Mode that adjusts every setting by itself but also uses advanced hardware to its advantage, adding optical image stabilization and face detection that are sometimes stripped out of novice cameras.
The camera also has a slightly longer-ranged 4X zoom lens than many simple compacts and still has some manual adjustments, including both scene and white balance presets as well as custom control over shutter speed and other common point-and-shoot features. Canon says it consciously chose to use more ubiquitous AA batteries over a rechargeable but proprietary lithium-ion battery pack.
Shipments start as soon as mid-September and will have the E1 sell in lighter shades of blue, pink, and white for $200.