The list of products included digital cameras, color printers, laptop computers (featuring new widescreen models), and innovative devices such as the DVD Movie Writer, designed to make it easy for consumers to transfer old memories from VHS tapes to DVDs, and the Digital Media Receiver, which wirelessly transmits the movies, music, and pictures stored on your PC to play through your television and stereo.
The New York Times reported this Fiorina comment about digital photography: “For many, maybe for most, the digital experience has been anything but empowering.” She said “the difficulty of using a digital camera and downloading the images to a personal computer” is the reason that “only” 20 percent of consumers have so far switched from film-based cameras to digital.
However, whether or not HP can really achieve its promise of simplicity “remains to be seen. In informal product demonstrations after Ms. Fiorina’s speech, at least two had hitches and in one case a computer froze and had to be rebooted.”
Some of the gadgets on display were only prototypes of possible future products, such as the pair of eyeglasses with a digital camera built into the frame. Another futuristic product – a newspaper displayed on your computer, complete with the ability to flip though the pages just as you would with a conventional printed newspaper.
And perhaps most intriguing, a new “translator camera” that travelers would find extremely valuable in a foreign country. You take a snapshot of anything written that you don’t understand (a road sign, a restaurant menu) and the camera automatically translates it into English via image capture, optical character recognition, and translation databases.