RIP Flip Video: a lamentation

April 17, 2011 at 11:38 am | Posted in video | Leave a comment

I can’t join in on the chortling and “I told you so’s” over the death of the Flip.  While it’s easy to blame it’s passing on the millions of smartphones sold in 2010 and easy access to video cameras there’s another side to the tale.   The Flip niche still is still alive and well because:

  • not all consumers want or can afford a smartphone
  • the complexity of a smartphone doesn’t meet the need “I just want to shoot video” with ease.
  • the multitasker conflict: smartphones are designed to perform many functions and their form factor can be downright clunky when it comes to shooting video. 
  • my Droid Incredible died last week and with it went the ability to shoot video – not the end of the world for me but if video is critical then a multi-tasker may not be the best bet.
  • the smartphone/iPod touch device is not always the best move for the classroom.  What would I rather lose from a replacement perspective: an iPod touch or a Flip?  I’ll take the lower cost Flip any day.

Kodak and Samsung still have good options in this market.  Plus there’s always the point and shoot video option.

Having said that it’s clear that market feels otherwise.  The shuttering of Flip (and 550 jobs) seems to be Cisco’s only option.

Then there’s an interesting viewpoint on how the death of the Flip shows a trend in innovation.  Check out the Mass-Customization blog for this one.

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