The GOOD: -Image quality, it has built in contrast enhancer which does a very good job. Exposures are accurate in most cases. Images taken at high ISO are noisy though. -Pop-up flash. Does a brilliant job in harsh sunlight as a shadow fill-in (distance to subject must of course not be huge, 2-4 metres I would say) and in general I'm impressed with the capabilities of this small flash and how good the camera processes images taken with flash. -Tv, Av, M modes! -Starts quick -Quick and accurate autofocus (in good lighting - in poor lighting it struggles a bit just like all its competitors) -Good body shape, durable, reasonable weight and it also grips well. -Zoooooom! 30x Optical, up to 60x digital zoom. -Stabilisation works excellent, steady shot at 1/20 sec whilst heavy zooming (it won't of course freeze motion, just your handshake). It's even better when shooting video, you can walk with the camera and video looks like you used a steady-cam. In video mode I think the camera crops the frame a bit and uses built-in software to compensate the handshake. -Bright, large and high quality LCD screen.
The BAD - No HDR. No built-in GPS. No RAW. - not a big deal for me but some may find it important. - No touchscreen = more buttons, - No built-in panorama mode. I don't want to spend additional time stitching photos in post. Here's Canon's biggest fail. -16MP, this one may be controversial :) Use 16mp if you want to fill up your HDD in a few months. No one needs 16MP unless want to print 90"x60". I shoot weddings at 8MP. -Canon Camera Window software. Rubbish. When shooting remotely you may only zoom in/out and release shutter and nothing else. You cannot re-focus, you can change NOTHING in-camera remotely (i.e. ISO, white balance, focus point). When using your tablet/smartphone to access camera you cannot choose "select all images" and save them to your device, you need to select one-by-one. Quite frustrating when you have 500 images. -NFC, is only used to launch Canon Camera Window on your NFC enabled device. It does nothing else. I would expect that if you see an image on the LCD screen of your camera and tap it with a smartphone it should automatically send it there. Nope. -You must flip the flash out manually. It does not flip out when needed - you are only advised to raise it on the LCD. However I think you are less likely to brake the flash when you are more aware you raised it manually - as the flash is not rock solid built to be honest.
Conclusion. For me it's a brilliant all rounder, travel megazoom, you name it. It handles well and wins on image quality, but is compromised on many features that comes as standard in Nikon or Olympus cameras. On my recent trip to Rome I took around 1k photographs with this little chap, having bulky and heavy 5DII+24-70 f2.8 in my back-pack with counter stopped at 100. XS700 is an upgrade from Canon IXUS 220HS which was a terrible camera.
I paid for it £190 imported from China. Did not get taxed.