updated 03:30 pm EST, Tue February 21, 2012
Sony may have DSLR-grade rival to Canon G1 X
Sony may be hoping to one-up Canon's PowerShot G1 X with a more ambitious camera of its own. A rumor originating from multiple "trusted sources" of Sony Alpha Rumors has a future camera using a DSLR-grade sensor at APS-C size but with a non-removable lens like its Canon alternative. The lens itself is described as a pancake-sized compact zoom that would keep the camera relatively small.
Pancake zooms have only recently come up among interchangeable lens cameras through lenses like the Panasonic Lumix G X. These are usually intended for video due to their quiet, steady zooms, possibly giving a clue as to Sony's intentions. The lens is considered special enough that it might be brought over to the NEX line as a removable lens.
Sony is supposedly "almost ready" with the camera, although its performance and its release date didn't accompany the rumor.
The APS-C design would be a return to pro compacts for Sony following the R1, a camera it introduced in 2005. Canon and Nikon have otherwise mostly owned the space and faced the most pressure from mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras, not direct challengers.