Cisco said it would be killing its Flip personal video recorder division soon even after spending more than $590 million to acquire it a few years ago. Cisco Flip is dead and I think it’s clear that smartphones helped kill it.
The closure of the Cisco Flip division will cost about 550 jobs and $300 million during the first half of its fiscal year. That’s a painful cut but the company has to do it after promising to make “bold moves” to help Cisco get back on track.
Cisco Flip was a great idea … in 2008. These drop-dead simple video cameras offered HD when that seemed like the realm of super-expensive camcorders. I have a Flip and always felt it was very easy to get your videos on the computer and up to a social network like YouTube or Facebook.
The problem is that the Cisco Flip division is going against a world where many people already have a video camera in their pocket. The iPhone 4 has a great video recorder and the Optimus 2X (coming to the states as the T-Mobile G2x) can even shoot videos at 1080p HD.
It’s not just the capability to shoot videos though, as you’ll be able to edit these videos on the go. Thanks to the rise in high-speed mobile networks, you’ll also be able to share these to your social networks with just a few taps. Cisco Flip is easy but recording, editing and uploading from your phone can be even easier.
The move will help Cisco refocus on its core competencies and it does have a “transition” plan for the Cisco Flip division. The company didn’t dive into what this would mean but it could potentially keep the software alive in the cloud and help those shooting so much video with their phones.