PC video calling goes high-definition

Microsoft is eager to make the experience of video calling as close to the experience of chatting in real life as possible. The company has released its first high-definition (HD) 1080p webcam, called the LifeCam Studio.

The web camera has a true 1080p sensor (twice as big as the sensor found in Microsoft's top-end webcam, the LifeCam Cinema HD) and a clean, graphic industrial design that looks like it was appropriated from a high-end video camera.

Additional features include an updated tripod thread, 360-degree view range, Auto Focus, ClearFrame Technology for smooth and detailed videos in low light conditions, and a worldwide three-year limited warranty.

The LifeCam Studio will be released just before Microsoft's Windows Live Messenger 2011 goes live this fall, giving users the ability to harness the new HD calling features found on the program.

"With Windows Live Messenger, customers can now have richer, more meaningful conversations by sharing photos, playing games and, of course, instant messaging all while video chatting in HD," said Michael Chang, group product manager, Windows Live Messenger.

"We are thrilled to deliver HD widescreen video calls with Windows Live Messenger 2011, giving LifeCam users a more vivid and clear image for their video calls."

To compare the LifeCam with a rival HD webcam, the Logitech 1080p C910, have a look at Engadget's review here: http://www.engadget.com/2010/06/10/logitech-launches-four-hd-webcams-we-preview-the-1080p-c910/

The LifeCam Studio can be purchased online now or in stores in late September for $99.95.

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