If you look at their Alpha line, they have downgraded all the entry level cameras to lower than the previous models. They are pushing photogs to buying the higher end models to get the features that the previous models have had.
I'm a Cybershot user since 1998 (I still have the first one, DSC-F1).
As you can imagine, I was buying newer models to improve (more Megapixels, Zoom, larger memory Sticks, etc.).
My last one, was the DSC-F88 and I wanted a newer one.
I bought a DSC-WX1 because it was the best model available and I was really disappointed soon.
Sony removed the MANUAL MODE ! ! ! !
In daylight, it's almost the same.
At night, this camera is useless, because it has short exposure and is Automatic only.
It has a better and improved Sensor so it's better in low light, but my 5 years old DSC-F88 is still better because it can handle 30 Seconds Exposure.
This new TOY tries to make the same in 2 seconds!.
I believe Sony tries to sell the DSC-H models and the Alphas so limitations on Compact models will force consumers with higer requirements to buy a bigger and expensive model.
I returned the DSC-WX1 to Sony because of the poor results.
I will search for a compact digital camera somewhere else.