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PicturePhone: How Bell Telephone lost a half billion, but nearly created the internet

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Published on Jun 17, 2014

How Bell Telephone's PicturePhone, introduced in 1964, flopped yet nearly catalyzed the internet. Technically, it was an amazing achievement: Bell used the existing twisted-pair copper wire of the telephone network -- not broadband lines like today -- to produce black and white video on a screen about five inches square. And, amazingly for the time, it used a CCD-based-camera. It was meant to be the most revolutionary communication medium of the century, driving subscribers to purchase broadband lines, but failed miserably as a consumer product costing Bell a half billion dollars. This is one of three videos in a series on marketplace failures of technological objects. http://www.engineerguy.com/failure.

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