Ever miss the old Polaroid instant photos that once defined the cutting edge of technology but have long since been replaced by digital cameras? Well, now’s your chance to reconnect with the past.
At CES this week, the company that now owns the Polaroid brand showed off a modern interpretation of the iconic camera invented back in the 20th century by Edwin Land. Due to be released to the public in mid-January, the new Polaroid Socialmatic camera produces 2 x 3-inch digital photos using a built-in printer. Prints take less than a minute to emerge—and there’s no need to wait for them to develop or flap them back and forth to dry them.
The new Polaroid, which will cost $299 and is already available for preorder on Amazon.com, features a touch screen, a 14-megapixel sensor and 4 gigabytes of built-in storage. It also comes with a 2 megapixel rear-facing camera for selfies. Based on the Android mobile operating system, the device uses proprietary paper that the company says will costs about 50 cents each and come in packs of 10.
Unlike the new Polaroid’s famous ancestors, the new camera doesn’t make you commit an image to paper unless you like it. You can crop and touch up photos before hitting the print button, and share images electronically using WiFi and Bluetooth.
If the idea of a Polaroid camera intrigues you, perhaps you’ll also be interested in Polaroid’s take on wireless communications. The company plans to release a line of smartphones and tablets later in 2015.