Biscotti review: Making online video chats easierPosted 3:08 pm on Wednesday, June 13th, 2012 by Chris Del Castillo
Video chatting can be done anywhere, from your computer, laptop, phone or tablet. One other key ingredient is a good internet connection to send and receive data. Thanks to Skype, Google, Yahoo, Face Time and other programs, it’s easy to do a video chat online.
For people who aren’t tech savvy, this may not be easy. For example, I’ve personally have been trying to teach my grandparents how to use a computer. I programmed all their equipments so that they’d be easy to use, but they still ask how to start Skype video conference and etc. This is where the Biscotti comes in.
The Biscotti itself is very compact and reminds me of a Wii Sensor Bar. It’s a bit larger and wider and houses a camera and microphone. It also stores your information, and it is very simple to plug in. All you need is an HDMI cable to plug to your TV and Power Cable (They’re included in the box), and you are ready to chat. The size and weight make it easy for you to place it either on the bottom or top of your TV.
I tried it out myself since it supports Google chat and use it for meetings with my fellow colleagues at Nerd Reactor. Since the camera has a large view, I can easily have most of the crew at my house or at the office, with everyone being seen. I had a better test in mind for an item like this..
I took the Biscotti to my grandpa’s house and added the whole family to his list of contacts. I set up TV and taught him the basic controls, and every couple of days, I would send him a video chat so that we could talk, which makes things so much easier than driving back and forth to see him. A few weeks later he told me he wanted the Biscotti, thanks to how useful and convenient it was. He can see everyone including his great great grandchildren anytime when he sends a video request or vice versa. It’s just an easy click on the small remote. Hell, even my mom wants one to keep in touch with me and my sister using the Biscotti.
The Biscotti has some great video quality on my 32″ Vizio HDTV and clear sound quality. As long as you have a TV with HDMI and internet connection, you can use it anywhere.
Overall this is a great gift for your friends or family who aren’t really tech savvy. While almost every electronic device has a video chat function, it’s easy to make or accept a video call with the click of a button. Plus if you live in another state or country, it’s a great way to keep in touch. The only advice I can give is to make sure you add the Biscotti’s email address, because it’s a pain using the provided controller to type out a long name on the screen. After that, it’s clear sailing. My grandpa loves it and right now I use it to video chat with him wherever I am. And seeing him smile is worth it. Awww.
Growing up Chris watched a lot of the original Saturday morning cartoons and developed a love for arts and animation. Growing up he tried his hand at animation and eventually script writing, but even more his love of video games, anime and technology grew.