Verizon to sell Galaxy Camera with LTE, but it will cost you each month

Verizon Wireless is set to begin selling the Samsung Galaxy Camera on Dec. 13. The camera includes advanced features such as a 16-megapixel lens, 21x optical zoom lens and optical image stabilization, but two additional functions make the Galaxy Camera unique. The device runs on Google’s Android(s goog) operating system and has an integrated LTE radio. This gadgetry won’t come cheap: Verizon(s vzw)(s vod) has priced it at $549 and there’s a monthly fee to use the camera on Verizon’s LTE network.

Consumers with a Share Everything plan can add the Galaxy Camera to their account for a promotional price of $5 per month. That compares favorably to the $10 a month to add a tablet or $40 monthly fee to include a smartphone on the Share Everything account. But you might be better of forgoing the monthly access fee and buying a camera with an integrated Wi-Fi radio. You’ll be limited on when you can upload photos, of course, but the $5 add-on fee is more like a tax to use the mobile broadband data you’ve already purchased.

Galaxy Camera with AndroidRegardless of the monthly fee, the Galaxy Camera does bring a smartphone-like experience to photo shooting. Running on Android Jelly Bean, the device has a 4.8-inch HD Super Clear LCD touchscreen display that can be used with photo editing applications. Most other Android apps should run as well, so in a pinch you could update your social networking status over LTE, for example, from the camera.

I suspect the Galaxy Camera will appeal to those who want higher quality images and videos for online photo sharing, or perhaps even bloggers like myself. I often have to capture images at product launches and industry events, which then get uploaded to the web for editing and insertion in a blog post. Indeed a camera like this could be quite handy next month at the Consumer Electronics Show, but I’m not willing to pay the price of admission for access to LTE.

Adding connectivity to devices is a great idea for sure. Should each of them pay a “tax” to access already paid for data though? Let me know what you think or if the Galaxy Camera appeals to you, even with the monthly device fee.