Arrington reviews the Flip Mino

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Seeing as how our review unit of the Mino is ‘lost in the mail’, I thought I’d share with you what our boss thinks of the Mino. Michael doesn’t actually have one himself, but I trust his judgment and he’s done some perusing of the Web to see what everyone else is saying. I’m sorry we couldn’t share our thoughts on the Mino with you, but Flip only seems to care that Doug got the press release and not the actual device.

So I haven’t actually tried out the new Flip Mino. But I’ve spoken with people who have, and I used the Flip Ultra, which launched late last year, for a while before abandoning it. And I just can’t figure out why people like this thing.

None of the reviews compared the Flip to it’s core competition: normal digital cameras. Instead everyone focuses on the fact that Flip has sold nearly a million units, saying that’s 15-20% of the camcorder market – and the Flip is a fraction of the price of most of those competitors.

The Flip’s video quality (640×480) is much lower than most people would expect from a camcorder. But it happens to be exactly the same resolution as most digital cameras, almost all of which now offer video as well. And nearly 40 million of them sold in 2007. Canon alone sold nearly 9 million digital cameras last year.