Parents often take many photos of their children, but who wants their phone to constantly be on the fringes family gatherings? Canon's new PowerShot PX solves this problem. It's basically a home surveillance camera that captures happy memories. It can be placed near you to automatically take photos and videos. Built-in subject recognition allows you to select frames and images that you can view later.
This is not a novel concept. Google in 2018 promised similar functionality using its Clips camera (though it relied more than Canon on machine learning to choose the right moment). Reactions were mixed to say the least. Some people thought Clips was intrusive or creepy, while others felt it was ethically no different than taking pictures with your Android phone. The images and videos Clips took were not good enough in terms of quality or AI-driven timing. Clips cost $249, which was also quite expensive.
This last problem is not solved by the PowerShot PX, which retails at 449.99 in the UK and 4999.99 in Europe. The US retail price for the PowerShot PX would be $582 if converted straight in euros. However, availability and pricing in the States have yet to be confirmed.
The PowerShot PX is a 11.7 megapixel 1/2.3 inch CMOS sensor that can capture 11 megapixel JPEG stills and full HD (1920x1080) MP4 video to a 16GB microSD card. The main feature of the PowerShot PX is its mechanical pan-and-tilt mechanism. This allows the camera to move in 340 degrees from left to right, and 110 degrees up or down.
This function allows the smart framing feature of the PowerShot PX to work. It could also be used to distinguish it from the static camera on Clips. The built-in Wi-Fi or Bluetooth can wirelessly transfer photos and videos to computers, as well as to an app. This makes it easier to sort content and select the best. You can also use the voice control function to ask that the PX take a particular picture.
The Canon Powershot PX is simply too expensive for all the features it provides. We found that no amount of on-device intelligent (or mechanical movement as with the Clip) can capture photos and videos comparable to those taken on your smartphone. We will be able test the PX later and see if it offers anything different.