It’s not just big tech companies engaged in patent wars: Luma Labs has discontinued their Luma Loop and Luma LoopIt camera straps after Black Rapid was awarded a patent for camera slings with sliding connections on November 1st. In an open letter to customers, the company writes,
We did our research, consulted our lawyers, and found more than enough prior art related to this concept.
[...] the idea of a sliding camera sling isn’t an amazing new invention. It’s just a really good idea that’s been around for a while and which has been iteratively developed. Neither we nor our lawyers believed that the USPTO would grant a patent for the claims related to this concept. It was a surprise, then, when our competitor was granted a patent covering the concept on November 1st, 2011. To say that we’re disappointed that the USPTO couldn’t find the prior art around the idea is an understatement.
Not wanting to engage in a costly legal battle, Luma Labs has decided to killed off their main products. Despite this setback, the company is planning on sticking around: it’s working on a new strap concept that will be released in December.
An open letter to our customers, past and future [Luma Labs]
Thanks for the tip, Kim!
Well, that was fast. Just a week after opening up its Photovine photo sharing app to the public, Google is now planning to kill it off, along with its second — and not-yet-launched — app Pool Party. Google is planning to focus its photo-sharing efforts on Google+, and will be shutting down Slide, the company behind the apps, which Google acquired last August for $200 million. The Slide employees were developing the apps independently, which explains why they were being made for iOS initially and not Google’s Android. If you’ve already begun using Photovine, you’ll have a few months to preserve your data from the service before it’s shuttered.
Image credit: Trash bin by Omarukai
Goodbye Flip Video camera. Cisco announced today that they’re killing off the camera line in an attempt to refocus their consumer electronics business. They purchased the company behind the camera, Pure Digital Technologies, back in 2009. Flip Video cameras have long held the bestselling spots for camcorders on websites like Amazon by offering both HD video recording and convenient transferring with a built-in USB connection, but competition from rival camcorders and the introduction of HD video in smartphones (e.g the iPhone) has eaten into Cisco’s market share.
With the rate camera technologies are progressing on phones, makers of compact cameras are being forced to innovate lest their cameras go the way of the Flip. Perhaps that’s why manufacturers are moving into large sensor cameras as phones invade the compact camera market.
Image credit: Flip Cameras by rhondda.p
Perpignan, France is known in the photography world for the international photojournalism festival (Visa pour l’Image) it hosts every year, but recently it made photo-related news for quite a different reason — earlier this week a mentally-ill 47-year-old woman murdered her sister… with a tripod. Yikes…
Image credit: Image based on Vintage Clue game cards (weapons) by OnFoot4now