As price points drop and quality becomes more acceptable - a wide range of devices and form factors will continue to seep into enterprise environments. In the case of Flip, an expedient way to record video snippets relevant in many work situations where people want to "capture the moment". Microsoft is also evolving its LifeCam hardware. See the two stories below and follow the links to read the full articles:
This tiny video camera made it a pleasure to record startlingly good footage for a camera of its size both indoors and outside. It’s designed to be held comfortably in front of you, which didn’t make me feel removed from the event I was recording like many other video cameras. Not without flaws, the Flip’s 2x digital zoom isn’t ideal for shooting from afar, and on more than one occasion its software froze up on Windows PCs and Apple Macs. But once I got going, I started shooting videos in a new way, unobtrusively using it and then fitting the Flip into small purses. Saving and emailing footage was a breeze after a few initial hiccups.
Flip Video Ultra from Pure Digital Technologies
... The Flip Video Ultra is an improvement on the Flip Video, which Pure Digital introduced in May. Though it costs $30 more, the newer version features higher-quality sound and video (footage is half as compressed as that on the old Flip), a transflective screen with a better resolution and improved video-processing technology. The new Flip also integrates direct uploads to YouTube in its software program.
I took the new Flip along with me on a business trip to California and carried it around Washington, D.C., shooting in different environments: inside a dark auditorium at a press event; outside at dusk overlooking the San Francisco skyline from a rooftop barbeque; in my house at nighttime; and during a visit to Google headquarters with my boss, Walt Mossberg. The Flip worked well in each situation.
This video camera measures roughly four inches high by two inches wide and an inch deep, and the 60-minute version comes in black, white, pink and orange; 30-minute models only come in black and white. Though the Flip Video Ultra doesn’t have a flash, it’s designed to perform well under circumstances with low light because Pure Digital assumes most users will be recording indoors. It captures in 640×480 resolution at 30 frames per second.
I used the 60-minute Flip. In capture mode, an on-screen message tells how many minutes remain on the camera. In playback mode, captured clips are labeled with duration and numerical order, such as “Video 21 of 24.” Hitting the Delete button twice while a clip is on screen erases it.
Today MS Hardware announces two new LifeCam models that will hit store shelves later this month. ...
The VX-7000 is designed for the desktop PC, with a 2.0-megapixel sensor for HD video (2.0 MP) and still photography (7.6 MP interpolated).
For laptop PCs, the NX-3000 offers video at 640x480 resolution, HD still photography (1.3 MP) and a built-in unidirectional microphone with acoustic noise cancellation.