The moment HP bought Palm for $1.25Bn, I thought it was a waste of money. Leveraging a lackluster OS to fight Apple did not bode well. Last night, news broke out about HP hitting the “cut” button on its PC group. Where is it going to be “pasted” is still a mystery.
It is almost sad to see an iconic company like HP to suffer such fate. Apple all but single-handedly delivered the blow to HP. Was it the sleek design of Apple hardware, the power of Mac OS, or the iPhone/iPad iOS that killed the giant? I’d say it’s the latter, along with the half million apps for iPhones and iPads.
Like it or not, software is increasingly taking center stage. A product as simple as a document camera can become great due to its software. The software is often more important than most people think.
Dozens of companies in China can make a cheap document camera quickly. Electronic components are increasingly being commoditized at an ever increasing rate. Dozens of companies will be delighted to fill the void left in HP’s absence. However, even the most meticulous Apple knock-off’s are yet to put a dent in the popularity of the iPad or iPhone.
To a lot of people, the HoverCam is an affordable document camera. We do not want “inexpensive” to be mistaken for “cheap.” We created a USB camera in order to leverage the software. In the past years, a lot of technology advances in software have taken place, yet, not a lot of educators can readily benefit from it. I see the HoverCam as a change agent to bring affordability and rich functionality to our classrooms.
In the weeks to come, we would like to share more short postings like this one about the software features of the HoverCam that matter to educators.
Ji Shen is the CEO of Pathway Innovations and Technologies, Inc as well as the inventor of the HoverCam document camera series.