What sounds like a better deal?
You don’t need to be a frugal living expert, or even a novice for that matter, to figure out consumers are going to go with free video chat technology versus shelling out $600 out of pocket for hardware (that will probably be obsolete by end of 2011) and another $25 per month service fee.
Product roll outs like these are great examples of why many “innovators” probably aren’t going to be the innovators of tomorrow, and are trying desperately to monetize any remaining technologies they can. In the Umi’s case, it looks like another attempt to move merchandise to retail, non-tech savvy (e.g. aging) consumers, which can only be the result of many failed staff meetings where upper management puts the squeeze on the marketing and sales staff to justify their salaries for the next fiscal year.