Google’s AI-powered Clips smart camera is now available

Here are four things Google Clips is not:

  • A life-logging camera
  • An action camera
  • A security camera
  • Cheap

And two things it is:

  • Deceptively sophisticated
  • Available today

After being announced back at the Pixel 2 event in October, Google’s new device is now available via Google Store, Best Buy, B&H and Verizon for $249. The company calls the product a “smart camera,” a reference to all of the complex artificial intelligence and machine learning happening on device in order to make the experience as simple as possible.

I wrote a lot of words about the product over here, but the long and short of it is that Clips is aimed firmly at parents and pet owners looking for a way to capture candid moments with their loved ones that don’t require them to have a their smartphone out at all times.

Here’s Google’s description,

Clips isn’t designed to replace your smartphone camera or your DSLR. It’s a new type of camera that captures the moments that happen in between posed pictures by using on-device machine learning to look for great facial expressions from the people—and pets—in your life. It turns these into short clips without your having to use video editing software.

The device relies on AI to identify familiar faces and determine the best moments to capture a seven second video that can be turned into a still images or shared as an Apple Live Photo, Google Motion Photo or animated GIF.

The system is designed to learn and recognize humans, cats, dogs, and, I can personally confirm, rabbits. Honestly, the review is worth reading just for the dog and rabbit GIFs alone. Okay, fine, you can have this one of Veanne’s dog, Henri, for free:

The camera is compatible with both Android and iOS.