Bits & Bytes
`HELLO, HONEY, THIS IS ME ON MOUNT EVEREST'
If you're like many people, you have loads of your family's special moments--baby's beginning steps, that first ride on a two-wheel bicycle, or a high-school graduation--recorded on videotape. And probably the only time you share those memories with grandma and grandpa or other loved ones who live far away is the occasional holiday gathering of the clan. Now, you can share it all--immediately.
On Sept. 27, Sharp Electronics Corp., the $2.8 billion U.S. subsidiary of the Japanese electronics giant, hit the market with a device that--when attached to a Sharp camcorder--can send color images over telephone lines. Just hook the VR-MS1U Viewcamteleport to a phone jack, set the new Sharp VL-H410U Viewcam on the Viewcamteleport, which acts like a video modem, and recorded images or "live" shots of what's in front of the camera lens can be sent in as little as eight seconds. All that's needed on the other end is another Viewcamteleport connected to a Viewcam camcorder. The $900 Viewcamteleport may be a bit pricey for most amateur video shooters, but the company expects 50% of its sales to stem from such business uses as real estate, fashion design, security, and training.EDITED BY IRA SAGER