A promotional video shown to Microsoft sales staff has revealed a Microsoft wireless webcam codename “Sputnik” – a nod to the Sputnik 1, the first artificial satellite in space. Unlike its spacefaring counterpart however, it appears this product never quite made it off the ground.
Elements of the video including Windows XP, Windows Live Messenger 8 and a chunky CRT TV sets this product back to somewhere around 2004.
Although wireless webcams are not a new concept even at that time, but all of which are designed for security and surveillance purposes. Even till now, none have been designed and marketed specifically for the consumer space. Obvious technological limitations such as battery life, wireless quality and range might have attributed to the product’s demise.
Come to think of it, a wireless webcam still makes a lot of sense and smartphones today could easily duplicate its functionality with a combination of software on the PC and the phone. Windows Phone 7 Series app anyone?