Axis NetEye 200 (1996)

I don't usually tend to feature webcams here unless they have some sort of historic value. The Axis NetEye 200 for instance was the world's first true internet camera and webserver in one. This palm-sized digital color camera is installed itself as a self-contained web server. It required no extra system resources or file server involvement. By using a browser it was possible to take snapshots and use them for any web application or send them over the internet. Special software allowed this camera to function as a time-lapse recorder. Images were conviently saved as JPEG files. It could record 1 fps in CIF and 1 frame every 17 seconds in 4CIF. Axis is still an active company in the field of camera surveillance today.

Ulf Ridell from Informationssystem AB in sweden even designed an outdoor housing for this camera that contained heating and a thermostat, a sun/rain-roof,  as well as a socket for the power supply. It was sold through the Axis website. The NetEye 200 became increasingly popular. One of the cameras was even used to monitor the Davis Cup Finals in 1996. According to Axis co-founder Dr. Martin Gren, the NetEye 200 was in fact the first IoT (Internet-of-Things) device!

Timo Sachse from Axis was kind enough to send me an early NetEye drawing from Carl-Axel Alm, who produced the drawing in 1995. All images kindly provided by Axis Communications unless otherwise stated. Also digicammuseum.com is indebted to Dr. Martin Gren from Axis who donated a NetEye 200 for our collection.

Specifications

  • Brand: Axis Communications
  • Model: NetEye 200
  • First mentioned: 1996
  • Marketed: yes
  • MSRP: $1,299
  • Imager Type: 1/4" colour CCD
  • Resolution: 704x576
  • Internal Storage: 2.5MB
  • External Storage: video tape recorder / Computer with harddrive
  • Lens: f=4mm proprietary lens with focus control
  • Shutter: 1/50s - 1/10,000s
  • Aperture Range: -
  • LCD screen size: -
  • Size: 155 x 125 x 48mm
  • Weight: 500 gr.
  • Remarks: First Internet of Things device

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