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Samsung Pixon 8-megapixel camera phone: Pixon, Pix-off

Samsung announces a new 8-megapixel camera phone.

The Samsung Pixon is one loaded camera phone. Samsung

To us, the Samsung Pixon's name sounds like it was chosen to reflect the phone's camera capabilities, sounding something like a mix between "pictures" and "megapixels." And in any case, we like the name better than "Innov8", which Samsung chose for another 8-megapixel camera phone that it announced earlier this summer. You'll certainly be seeing this played up in the promotion, with a Web site dedicated to the adventures of one Nick Turpin, a professional street photographer let loose with the 8-megapixel-packing Pixon to see if a phone can truly challenge cameras for on-the-hoof, off-the-cuff snapping.

Other camera functions include a 16x zoom, although digital zooms aren't worth the circuit board they're printed on. This Craver also has the same low opinion of smile shot wherever it rears its vacantly grinning head, but each to their own. Shake reduction is included, but as leaked details are still a bit sketchy, we don't know the specifics. There's a dual-power LED flash, which is good for those dark nights in pubs and clubs. To view the pictures, there's a photo browser that uses the built-in accelerometer to automatically rotate images to the correct orientation.

There's a video option, too, with both video and photo upload are integrated into the phone. Video is supported by something called "virtual 5.1 channel" surround sound, which frankly sounds very suspect to us.

Oh, and it also makes phone calls, so you've got HSDPA quad-band 7.2Mbps connectivity. It's controlled with an 3.2-inch touchscreen, in a frame only half of an inch thick. That's quite a bit of camera in such a little phone.