Kid-friendly digicam only $89
July 29, 1999
by James A. Martin
(IDG) -- Think you got a great deal on that digital camera you bought for the family? Then read this and weep: KB Gear Interactive, a developer of kid-friendly computer peripherals, recently announced an $89 model.
With a top resolution of 640 by 480 pixels, KB Gear's JamCam isn't exactly a cutting-edge digital camera. Nor is it the least expensive digicam available; Mattel sells a low-resolution Barbie camera for $70. But for the price, KB Gear promises a sturdy, easy-to-use camera for children and adults. The unit can produce images suitable for sharing online or printing for personal use.
The camera stores as many as 48 images in low-resolution mode (240 by 180), as many as 24 pictures in medium resolution (320 by 240), or up to 8 in high resolution (640 by 480). The JamCam stores images in internal memory and transfers them over USB or serial port connections.
The JamCam includes Microsoft Picture It 99 to edit photos, add special effects, and create personalized cards and calendars. Also bundled is ArcSoft PhotoFantasy, which lets you create "photo fantasies" by combining personal photos with a selection of some 200 creative backgrounds.
The camera lacks a traditional flash and doesn't use a charge-coupled device to capture images, as most digicams do. Instead, the JamCam uses a Hewlett-Packard-designed CMOS image sensor, which uses less battery power than CCDs. It can capture images in low-lighting situations, according to KB Gear representatives. In addition, the camera doesn't offer an LCD for image previews. To see your pictures, you've got to transfer them to the computer.
The original JamCam, introduced in 1998, sold for $99 and could only capture images in resolutions of 240 by 480 pixels.
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