At first glance, the Canon G15 looks pretty similar to the Powershot G12, but there are a few significant differences. The most notable of these is the stacked or overlapping dials on the top that enable both the mode dial and the exposure compensation dial to be squeezed on to the right side of the camera's top plate.
Although these could potentially be a turn-off for novices, they enable more experienced photographers to set the exposure mode and adjust the exposure quickly.
The lens has also seen a bit of a refresh, being the first Canon compact camera to feature an f/1.8 optic. This maximum aperture reduces to f/2.8 at the telephoto end of the 5x (28-140mm equivalent) zoom lens.
This should make it possible to restrict depth of field more effectively, to separate the subject from the background.
The style of the Canon G series won't appeal to everyone. They've never been the prettiest, with a distinct utilitarian look. The Canon G15 doesn't do much to change this, with the same basic shape. Unfortunately, it doesn't have the same retro charm that Fuji has managed to give its cameras such as the Fuji FinePix X10 and the Fuji FinePix X100.
Nevertheless, it's a sort of no-nonsense design that has found favour with many enthusiast and professional photographers, so it's easy to see why Canon has stuck with it.
Canon has taken the perhaps unusual decision to remove the articulating screen that was found on the Canon G12 and replace it with a fixed, 3-inch, 920,000 dot version. This does make it a little more pocket friendly than its predecessor, and it could be that Canon is hoping that more serious photographers will plump for its larger Canon G1 X camera.
The Canon G15 was launched at the same time as the Canon S110, which is a much smaller compact camera that also features GPS and Wi-Fi built into the body, along with a touchscreen and an f/2.0 lens. We can't help but wonder if Canon has spent more time on the PowerShot S110 and provided the PowerShot G series with only minor upgrades.
There have been a lot of premium compact cameras announced this year. The Canon G15 is priced at £549.99/AU$598/US$499 at launch, and it goes head to head with the Panasonic LX7, Sony RX100, Olympus XZ-2 and the Samsung EX2F.