Jan. 29, 2013 at 8:38 AM ET
Canon's new mid-range point-and-shoot, the ELPH 330 HS, lets you upload your images almost — but not quite — as easily as you would if you'd taken them with your phone. Though a nice zoom and decent low light performance should make the Canon's pictures be a bit better.
The 330 HS has a 12-megapixel CMOS sensor that will capture images at up to 6400 ISO, which should make difficult lighting situations easy enough to handle. That's 4 fewer megapixels than the previous version, but still more than enough, and the sensitivity is better. The 3-inch rear LCD isn't particularly high-resolution at 480x320, but it'll suffice.
Its lens is a nice long 10x zoom (better than its predecessor's 5x), with its maximum aperture going from a decent F/3 at the wide end to a rather slow (but standard for point-and-shoots) F/6.9 at the zoomed end.
Wi-Fi is built in (as it was last year; now it is "advanced" in an unspecified way), but you can't quite upload directly to Facebook or Instagram yet. You pair it with a special Canon app on your phone if you're on the go, or with your PC at home. Take a dozen shots and pick a couple to upload, then on your phone or PC, pick where you want to send them.
Not quite as easy as just opening the camera app and snapping a shot, but that zoom and improved low-light capability may balance things out. The camera should be available in March for $230.
Devin Coldewey is a contributing writer for NBC News Digital. His personal website is coldewey.cc.