A new gadget worth flipping for

Technically Speaking
By Tamara Nicola

There is a new low cost video camera now available in Canada that makes sharing video a whole lot easier. It is called “The Flip” and it is manufactured by Pure Digital. It is a small, compact device that runs on two AA batteries and records up to 60 minutes of video to its built-in flash drive. It is called “The Flip” because of the signature USB connection that flips out of the side. The simplicity of the device is genius. There are no advanced features, no power cables, not even a software disk to load as the software is built into the camera. All of this simplicity means you won’t find any complicated instruction manuals in the box either. There is a built in color LCD and audio features for recording and playback, 2X Zoom, a tripod mount, power switch and simple control buttons. That’s it.
Take it out of the box and pop in the two batteries, turn on the power and you are ready to record in 3 seconds by pressing one button on the back of the unit. This fast time to record feature ensures that you will never again miss the “Did you see that?” moment.
Aside from the low price, what really makes this video camera exciting is the straight to web publishing features. The built in software means you can connect, upload and edit videos on just about any computer with a USB port (PC or MAC). It features one touch video uploading to YouTube, MySpace, AOL and more. Not ready to share your flicks with the world? No problem, you can also upload to private sharing sites, send your video via email or try the built in greeting card formats for something completely different. Create custom movies with your own music sound track or burn your creations to DVD.
I have to say I am emotionally attached to this little camera, it goes everywhere I go. The compact size makes that possible. It weighs in at just .03 lbs and easily fits into a pocket. It is about 3 inches high, 2 and quarter inches wide, and an only an inch and a quarter deep. All of the videos posted at my blog (www.blog.visitgrandbend.com) were created with The Flip.
Pure Digital has just released a new pricier version called the Mino that is slightly smaller and incorporates a built-in rechargeable battery. No word yet on when it will be readily available in Canada.
For now, you can check out the The Flip Ultra model available at Wal-Mart, where it retails for $158.64CAD. For those who want to wait for the Mino, you can pre-order yours at www.jr.com, it retails for $199.99 US.