Polaroid combines Android with a camera, offers expandable compact camera

Gadgets of all shapes and sizes are getting a good sprucing this year, and here’s one that’s taken us completely by surprise. Legendary photography company Polaroid has decided to make a camera that runs on Google’s Android OS.

The new SC1630 is an unexpected camera, featuring a 3.2 inch touchscreen on one side with a lens on the other, capable of 3x optical zoom on a 16 megapixel sensor.

In fact, the whole thing reminds us very much of an Android phone, except for that this camera has optical zoom to work with, capable of reaching 108mm at the far end.

Polaroid has even left WiFi and Android Market in, letting you share your files easily with any Android app – such as Twitter and Facebook – as well as potentially using other photography applications to make the camera better.

“The newest member of the Polaroid family, the Polaroid SC1630 Smart Camera unites the beauty of high-end digital images with powerful Android connectivity features,” said Scott Hardy, president of Polaroid. “The result is an instant experience of click, capture and share that enables social networks to see and experience the moment as if they were there.”

Australian pricing or availability has yet to be announced, but when it does, we’ll be eager to play with it. And tweet from it. And see if it works with our favourite photography apps on Android.