Wi-Fi-enabled cameras have been around for several years, but arguably never took off because they never hit on the right combination of performance and capabilities; at various points we've seen powerful Wi-Fi but subpar photo quality, good cameras but with limited Wi-Fi capabilities, or simply middling all around. Now Sony's giving it a shot with the Cyber-Shot DSC-G3, and it looks like the company may at least get the feature side of the equation right.
The 10-megapixel, 4X zoom G3 includes 4GB of storage and a 210ppi 3.5-inch touch-screen display with Wi-Fi connectivity that allows you to wirelessly upload photos and video and deliver e-mail notifications. Unlike other implementations, the G3 gives you the tools to navigate and connect to networks, for instance, behind the terms-of-service agreement screens on public and hotel hot spots, via an embedded Web browser. The combination of organization tools and sophisticated and selective upload greatly expands the usefulness of both aspects of the camera. It includes free AT&T Wi-Fi access to Sony's Easy Upload Home Page until January 31, 2012.
Of course, like the others, this model may turn out to have performance or photo-quality flaws. And some may find $499 a bit pricey. But hope springs eternal. We'll find out when we get it in; that should be soon, since it's shipping now.