Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Google starts selling its $249 Clips camera, but you need to join a wait list to get one

Google's hands-free AI camera goes on sale but then quickly sells out.


Google unveiled its Clips camera alongside the Pixel 2 back in October, but the company only finally made it available for purchase over the weekend.

The $249 Clips hands-free camera uses AI running on an Intel Movidius chip to decide when to take a snap of family and friends. The device is meant to be placed in living rooms or clipped to chairs to take natural-looking photos in the background.

The camera went on sale over the weekend, but as Android Police noted, delivery times were quickly pushed out to early March. Google has now stopped taking new orders, offering customers the option of joining a waitlist.

Clips take motion photos, not unlike Apple's Live Photos, except the clips are seven seconds long and don't have any audio.

Its AI learns to recognize faces and over time will focus on taking clips of the people it's familiar with.

Since the device has no screen, the clips need to be shared with a compatible phone for viewing, but all clips can be transferred wirelessly to the phone app. The camera has a 130-degree field of view and takes video at 15 frames per second. It has 16GB of internal storage.

Clips, for now, is only available in the US. Google hasn't said whether it will be released in other markets.

Google says it built Clips with privacy and control in mind. While it could be uncomfortable knowing a camera is always on and watching your family at home, the machine learning happens on the device rather than in the cloud. Also, the camera light is activated when it's recording.




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