[CES 2012] The Samsung InTouch Camera is one of the most interesting Skype-related products that we have seen at CES. In a nutshell, this camera is a self-contained Skype camera that has a webcam, microphone, speaker, and all the necessary internal software to make Skype calls. In short, it’s a self-contained Skype computer. The video feed (and audio, I guess) comes out on an HDTV, or any HDMI-enabled display. On the hardware side, it’s hard to get any simpler than that.
The InTouch is designed to be placed on an HDTV frame or a table, and thanks to its tilt, it has a 30 degrees of freedom, which should be enough for most settings. It connects to a WiFi (N/G/N) network in an effort to reduce cable clutter, even if there are two cables that are required: the 5V power and the HDMI.In terms of image capture, the InTouch has a sensor that has 2048×1536 pixels, so that’s beyond 1080p HD video. However, keep in mind that video compression is the main factor when using Skype, and although we are hopeful, we will need to see the quality for ourselves before calling it “HD”. At the moment, the camera has a fixed focus, which is appropriate for a living-room usage, even if having an auto-focus would be very nice.
I’m very curious to see how easy it to setup up and use, but this is a very promising product. If you have been eager to setup your parents/grand-parents with Skype in the living-room, this may be it. The product will retail for $199.99 and should be available in the spring, according to Samsung. www.samsungsv.com
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