When I started testing the Logitech Bemo there were a lot of "what is that?" type questions from the people around me.
The Bemo is recognizable as a camera only because its lens is very visible -- front and center at the top of its bright blue, capsule-shaped, 3.6-inch-long body (it's available in black and red versions, too). But beyond that, you wouldn't know exactly what type of camera it is by looking at it.
It is, in fact, a video camera. But, like many small video cameras these days, it's designed for a specific purpose, a specific type of video. The body is split in two: the top has the lens and mono microphone, and the bottom half is one big record button.
Press and hold the button and the camera starts recording; a set of five white LEDs on the left side light up one at a time as each second is captured. Release the button and it stops.
There is no lock on the button or any other continuous record option, and the maximum record time for a single clip is one minute. It's made to capture the moments that matter, the stuff needed to tell your story, and not the 10, 20, 30 minutes of nonessential material that you'd have to scrub through and edit out.
Basically, what Logitech has done with the Bemo is take the idea of capturing video a few seconds at a time, similar to what you'd do with apps like Vine and Instagram, and built a device around it. The videos are even square: 720 x 720 pixels.
Now, I realize I may have just lost a lot of you because, after all, I just said it's something your smartphone can already do, so why pay $130 for a separate device? Well, for starters, depending on how often you shoot little video clips, it's nice to have a discrete device for doing it.
Again, the Bemo is only 3.6 inches long and measures 1.2 inches wide by 0.7-inch thick, and it weighs 2.1 ounces. While testing it, I kept it clipped in my front pants pocket and barely knew it was there.
A switch on the right side powers it up in a couple of seconds and it's ready to record. Capture what you want, like your kid blowing out candles on a birthday cake, and you're done; the video saved to the 4GB microSD card that comes with the camera. Then capture more short clips of the party, the people, the decorations, or whatever else is important for your movie. Once you're done, it's time to open the app.
The Bemo app, currently only available for iOS, allows you to view and edit your clips. To get your clips onto your device and into the app, you connect the Bemo to your iPhone or iPad via Bluetooth. Below the camera's power switch is a small, flimsy door (it's sort of a pain to open, and you'll be opening it a lot) that covers the microSD card slot, a micro-USB port for charging, and a positively minuscule button for turning on its Bluetooth.