Panasonic’s new Android phone has a 1-inch camera sensor with Leica lens


Photo: Panasonic.

Panasonic today announced its impressive new Android-powered Lumix CM1 smartphone with a built-in 1-inch camera sensor and Leica lens. It’s the kind of sensor found inside dedicated point-and-shoots like Sony’s incredible RX100, and it’s going to deliver pictures you probably thought you’d never take on a smartphone.

The Lumix CM1 is a little bit like the Samsung Galaxy K Zoom in that it looks more like a camera than a smartphone, but it’s prettier than anything Samsung has ever made. It also has a better camera — one that boasts a 20-megapixel resolution, a mechanical shutter, an f/2.8 Leica lens, and a manual control ring.

That ring doesn’t control zoom, however. Unlike the Galaxy K Zoom, the Lumix CM1 doesn’t have a zoom function. Its lens extends out of its body, but it does so only for focusing.

Photo: Panasonic.

Photo: Panasonic.

Its insides are also pretty impressive. In addition to its 4.7-inch 1080p display, the Lumix CM1 has a 2.3GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of built-in storage, and a microSD card slot that will accept cards up to 128GB in size — perfect for storing the super sharp 4K video you’ll shoot on this thing.

Interestingly, Panasonic doesn’t want the Lumix CM1 to be thought of as a smartphone with an excellent camera. Instead, it “prefers that it be thought of as a very capable camera that also comes with communication capabilities,” The Verge reports.

The Lumix CM1 will go on sale in France and Germany this November, priced at around €900 (approx. $1,165). If it does well, Panasonic will consider launching it in other markets, but its hefty price tag could just outweigh its impressive functionality for many.