In my opinion, this is just another poor attempt at a mirror-less design. The only companies to have got it right are Sony and Samsung due to their use of APS-C sized sensors. To use anything smaller, with 4/3 being a slight exception, is a waste. The cameras with smaller sensors are just glorified point and shoots with interchangeable lenses.
Why pay $1,000 for a camera and basic zoon lens when a G12, S100 or P7100 can give you equal quality shots and a larger zoom range for half as much money?
"There's a sucker born every minute." ~ P.T. Barnum
Also, what is the biggest problem with a P & S? I would say indoor shots under poor light with those built-in flashes, and not tracking of high speed objects. This is one clear reason why a larger sensor with better high ISO capabilities is a must in this type of design.
I can't believe it took Nikon 4 years to design this. Poor R & D for sure.
PhotoPhoolish: If the camera lives up to its specs, it will be the perfect camera for almost every type of shooter; with the exception of studio shooters whose clients require billboard sized shots.
All you people disappointed by the "lack" of sufficient pixels, perhaps medium format is the way to go. If you search the web and seek out famous studio shooters with high end clients, you will find that an overwhelming majority use medium format cameras and not full fame DSLR's.
This camera can be used by sports photographers, who then get bored and switch to sports journalism, then make a switch to the paparazzi, then make friends with a famous musician and take shots in poorly lit concert venues and finally get sick of people and make the switch to landscapes.
The D3S is the closest competitor, but it comes up short in pixel count.
As I stated in the beginning, if it lives up to its reported specs, this will be the most versatile camera on the planet until Nikon counters with something similar.
I agree with you about the cost of MF and how a less expensive high MP camera would appeal to those that require high res. files for whatever reason. However, if I may attempt to get inside the mind of Canon, I would imagine - based on the cameras specs - that they were more interested in appealing to a broad audience and buyer.
If they went the high MP way, they would lose the ability to shoot at anything resembling high ISO's and fps. You can see this clearly in Nikon's D3X which to date is the top-of-the-line full frame camera out there, but only able to produce really clean files up to ISO 1600 topping out at 6400. While great for studio and landscape photographers, it loses people looking for high ISO and fps capability.
Since the technology doesn't exist for a 30mp, ISO 100,000+, 10 fps beast, I feel Canon has attempted to produce the next best thing with this camera....if the specs are accurate.
Question: Since when did 18 MP become not enough??? :)
If the camera lives up to its specs, it will be the perfect camera for almost every type of shooter; with the exception of studio shooters whose clients require billboard sized shots.