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Dear Canon: Time to add communications to your low-end cameras
By Dave Winer on Tuesday, June 29, 2010 at 6:59 AM.

A picture named crosshairs.gifThere's a long list of products that are getting annexed by the market defined by iPhone and Android. The most recent to succumb are e-book reader hardware and GPS devices.  permalink

Someday the iPhone will be seen for what it is and is not. It is not a phone. It is a Swiss Army Knife of ultra portable computing. Sure the phone on the iPhone doesn't work, but who uses the phone these days? But don't worry voice will be new again, seen as an innovation. Look forward to the day when you'll text someone: I'm at a Starbucks, let's switch to voice. <img src="> permalink

Imagine the insult for phone makers. permalink

To be knocked out of a market by something calling itself a phone that is not. permalink

If you ranked all the things an iPhone does by how well it does it where would It's a Phone be on the list? permalink

Amazon being smart, is quickly turning Kindle into a software product. No strategy taxes for the books. If people prefer to read on an iPad or a Droid, not a problem for Amazon -- they make software for all platforms. Even netbooks running Windows and Mac desktops. The Apple version of Kindle does video, even though Amazon's hardware doesn't. How's that for being open-minded and aggressive!  permalink

Now it's getting pretty close to too late for the low-end camera-makers to add basic communications to their products, and design the UI around that, instead of the klunky methods they now have for getting the pictures off the devices. It should be simple. As I review pictures on the camera, I will click a button that says that I want the photo to be transmitted to a place I configured through a website from my desktop, laptop, iPad -- whatever. Then, in the background, quickly -- it uploads the pictures, with nothing further needed from the user.  permalink

Apple and Google still do not have this functionality.  permalink

Imagine how a camera with the Twitter or Facebook logo would work. You wouldn't even need to configure it beyond telling it your Facebook username and password. If Canon isn't working on this now they'll be out of the low-end camera business in less than five years. That's how quickly the Apple/Google juggernaut is moving. permalink

I've always suspected that the supposed animosity between Google and Apple is just an act to suck all the oxygen out of the trade press and focus every bit of attention on these two companies. Notice who we don't talk about anymore. Notice who just got bought by H-P. Where's Dell? Exactly. <img src="> permalink

It's time for one of the products that are in Apple's cross-hairs to do the necessary innovation before Apple does. Don't be a sitting duck and then a deer caught in the headlights, making stupid jokes about how you can hold your product any way you want. No one thinks its funny, it's so sad. It's already too late when it comes to that. permalink

PS: People will say, as they always do, that I should check out EyeFi, but I have -- of course. Not what I'm thinking of. permalink

PPS: Version 2.0 of the communicating camera product will be the social camera. permalink

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