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Samsung Beats Sony Ericsson To 12-Megapixel Punch

Today Samsung announced the Pixon12, a 12-megapixel monster that will be the first such high-end cameraphone to actually hit store shelves. It highlights the growing race to pack in as many pixels and features into phones as possible.
Today Samsung announced the Pixon12, a 12-megapixel monster that will be the first such high-end cameraphone to actually hit store shelves. It highlights the growing race to pack in as many pixels and features into phones as possible.The Pixon12 has a pretty impressive set of features. According to Samsung, not only does it have 12 megapixels, it has a lot of innovative features that are sure to improve the picture-taking experience beyond a high megapixel count.

It has a dedicated camera power key to launch the camera, which Samsung says has a fast boot time, fast capture time, fast shutter speeds available, and a fast image processing/saving engine so users can snap another picture faster.

Samsung uses its Touch Auto-Focus tracking feature, which is really neat. Using the 3.1-inch AMOLED touch display, users frame their shot, and then select the area they'd like the phone to focus by simply touching the screen. The camera will then focus on that area. It also has a tracking feature which will follow that specific object, even if it moves across the phone's screen. Nifty.

Samsung says the Pixon12 has a 28mm wide-angle lens, which makes it easier to take shots of large groups of friends up close. The Pixon 12 also has high-quality optics and a Xenon flash.

You want video? The Pixon12 has that, too. It captures video at 30 frames per second in 720 x 480 pixels.

Lest we forget, there are also some phone features stuffed in there, too. They include world-roaming quad-band GSM/EDGE radios, but only 3G support for Europe and Asia. Wi-Fi, GPS, FM radio with RDS, Bluetooth 2.1 and more is all on board, as well. Samsung didn't say what operating system the Pixon12 uses, but my guess is the Symbian-based version of TouchWiz.

No price point was announced, but the phone goes on sale in Europe later this month.

The Pixon12 is the latest phone top highlight that today's phones rival stand alone point-and-shoot cameras when it comes to performance. Samsung, LG, Nokia and Sony Ericsson all have 8-megapixel phones either already available or almost complete. They each include a bevy of user-friendly features that are making more and more people use their phones as their main image-capturing device.