A feature that's beginning to appear more and more often in both point and shoot and high-end digital cameras is the ability to connect to a Wi-Fi network. When you can send photos wirelessly through your home Wi-Fi network, it can greatly simplify the process of creating backup copies of your images, as well as sharing photos with others.
Some cameras allow you to make direct connections to Facebook or other social networking sites, too, which can be a great feature.
The downside to Wi-Fi-enabled cameras is that they can be a little difficult to set up and use on occasion. The wireless connection also can drain the battery more quickly than using a USB cable connection.
Still, once you have successfully put together a Wi-Fi connection with your digital camera, you'll wonder how you've lived without it. Here are the best Wi-Fi-enabled cameras currently on the market.
High-end Canon DSLR cameras are always enticing, and one of the latest models, the Canon EOS 6D DSLR camera, is no exception. Unlike some other DSLR models, Canon has included a built-in GPS unit and built-in Wi-Fi capabilities with this camera.
The Canon EOS 6D is going to carry a high price tag, but its feature list compares well against other models in this price range.
Canon has attempted to provide some advanced features in its ELPH series of stylish point-and-shoot cameras with the HS (high sensitivity) designation, and the latest in this family, the Canon PowerShot ELPH 330 HS, follows along this line of thinking.
The ELPH 330, which is among the best cameras released in 2013, can shoot at up to 6.2 frames per second in burst mode at a full 12.2MP of resolution. It also should perform well in low light using the HS technology, and the ELPH 330 can shoot at an ISO setting up to 6400.
The ELPH 330, which is available in black, silver, or pink, also has a 10X optical zoom lens, full 1080p HD video recording, and a 3.0-inch LCD screen.
The S120 has plenty to offer photographers looking for more than beginner-level features in a thin camera. It works extremely fast with minimal shutter lag and a burst mode of up to 10 frames per second. This model has a 1/1.7-inch CMOS image sensor, which gives it a significant advantage over point and shoot cameras. Canon provided a touch screen interface with the S120, which makes this model very easy to use as well.
That's a lot of power to find in a camera that measures only 1.14 inches in thickness. Unfortunately the price of the PowerShot S120 will leave this model beyond the budget of quite a few photographers. For that amount of money you could almost purchase a beginner-level mirrorless ILC or DSLR camera after all. And the small 5X optical zoom lens will disappoint some photographers. Still, this is one of the most powerful thin cameras on the market.
Fujifilm's third interchangeable lens mirrorless camera -- the X-M1 -- is the most impressive model yet, offering an image sensor that's similar in size to what you'd find in a DSLR camera.
The X-M1, which measures only 1.5 inches in thickness without a lens attached. includes a 3.0-inch articulated LCD, a start-up time of 0.5 seconds, full 1080p video recording, built-in Wi-Fi, and in-camera RAW processing.
The X-M1 can make use of an Fujifilm XF or XC interchangeable lenses. You can find the X-M1 in three body colors, black, silver, or brown.
With so many interesting features available in the Nikon Coolpix S800c -- including wireless connectivity capabilities -- it's tough to know what to focus on first.
For starters, the S800c has a 10X optical zoom lens in a camera body that measures only 1.06 inches in thickness. The 3.5-inch OLED touch screen is very bright and sharp. This camera has 16MP of resolution, and it can shoot full HD video.
The Coolpix S800c's on-screen interface is based on the Android operating system for mobile devices, which should make it very easy to use to visit the Web with the built-in Wi-Fi and GPS capabilities.
Small ultra zoom cameras are growing in popularity, and Nikon's latest contribution to this market is the Coolpix S9500.
The S9500 offers a 22X optical zoom lens as well as an impressive 18.1MP CMOS image sensor. This thin Coolpix model includes an impressive 3.0-inch OLED display screen and full 1080p HD video recording options. You'll also find built-in GPS and Wi-Fi features with this camera.
The next step in wireless connectivity for digital cameras -- NFC (Near Field Communication) -- is part of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LF1, which is now available.
Using NFC technology, you can connect the Lumix LF1 to a DLNA-enabled Panasonic TV to show your images directly from the camera with no wires, for example. The LF1 also has built-in Wi-Fi capabilities.
Panasonic gave the LF1 a 1/1.7-inch image sensor with 12.1MP of resolution, which should yield better image quality than point-and-shoot cameras. Additionally, the LF1 has a 7.1X optical zoom lens, a 3.0-inch LCD, an electronic viewfinder, and full HD video recording.
The Lumix LF1 is available in black or white camera bodies.
There is an aspect to photography and cameras that many camera reviewers forget about -- the "fun" factor. Cameras should work well, certainly, but they also should be fun to use, especially point and shoot cameras.
With that in mind, Samsung's DualView DV300F does a really nice job of succeeding on both fronts, making it one of the best cameras released in 2012.
With its two LCD screens and Wi-Fi capability, the DV300F is perfectly built for sharing photos via social networking. This camera also shoots photos that are of a much higher quality than you'd expect to find in the sub-$150 price range.
In addition, the DV300F has 16.1 megapixels of resolution, a 5X optical zoom lens, and 720p HD video.
Samsung is currently showing off a new model called Galaxy Camera, which will be running the Android 4.1 Jelly Bean operating system, further blurring the line between digital cameras and cell phones.
The Galaxy Camera is expected to have a 16MP CMOS image sensor, can shoot 1080p HD video, built-in Wi-Fi, 3G or 4G support, a 4.8-inch touch screen LCD, and a 21X optical zoom lens. Those are some impressive features that helped the Galaxy Camera earn an award from TIPA.
Samsung's family of DIL cameras have provided some great models over the past few years, including the NX10. The latest Samsung DIL camera is now available, and the NX2000 looks like another very impressive camera.
The NX2000's specification list is certainly eye-catching. It offers 20.3 megapixels of resolution in a large image sensor, 8 frames per second in burst mode, a 3.7-inch large touch screen LCD, and full HD video recording. You can connect the NX2000 to Android and iOS mobile devices or use built-in Wi-Fi connectivity.
The NX2000 is available in pink, white, or black camera bodies and matching colors of NX lenses. It made my list of the best cameras in 2013.
11. Samsung WB250F
Samsung has done a really nice job of late creating thin ultra zoom cameras that give you a variety of great features, including built-in Wi-Fi. The latest model, the WB250F, is another strong camera along this line.
The WB250F includes an 18X optical zoom lens, a 14MP CMOS image sensor, full 1080p HD video recording, Wi-Fi, and a 3.0-inch touch-screen LCD. You also can download a Remote Viewfinder app to allow your smartphone as a camera display.
Look for the WB250F to be available now in black, white, red, or gun metal gray. Like the NX2000 and Galaxy Camera, the WB250F made my list of 2013's best cameras.