When Lytro released its namesake digital camera last spring, it wasn’t immediately clear what sort of person would want to buy it. On one hand, it was a genuine technological breakthrough: As the first consumer light-field camera, it captured the direction of light in a scene as well as color and intensity, letting you snap photos which could be refocused after the fact. It packed that breakthrough into a super-simple pocket-sized aluminum rectangular box which was a radical departure from any other point-and-shoot model ever made.

But for all the innovative wow factor of the Lytro’s refocusable photos, they could only be viewed using the company’s own software, web site and a web viewer which can be embedded in Facebook, blog posts and elsewhere. The camera wasn’t at all good at taking garden-variety snapshots, and its grainy, undersized touchscreen was a major design flaw. And with a starting price…

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