Rumors surrounding a new Amazon tablet have grabbed headlines claiming that this new offering may be shortchanging the consumer by not having a camera built in for video conferencing. However, I couldn’t help but wonder as I sifted through all the conjecture if we needed another device with a camera that would just add additional cost to an already useful device.

One must then wonder if Apple, in its ultimate wisdom, really believed that the Apple iPad 2 needed a front facing or rear facing camera, or if the company was just trying to increase the value of this new product. True, it did offer it for the same price as the original unit so it appeared to be that the consumer was getting more value for their buck, but then one must also consider that many people had purchased the original unit and would be required to purchase an additional one if they wanted to stay up with the latest and finest gadget being offered by Apple.

Now with that being said, I can see the purpose of a rear facing camera for those who need to add video conferencing to their daily lives, but for many of us this feature will be used for simple picture taking making it, in my opinion at least, redundant since many of the people who purchase tablets are already tech enthusiasts who would already own an iPod or iPhone, which already comes with a built-in camera.

Having experimented with much of the available technology, I discovered, early on, that almost all smart phones come with a built-in camera that equals or exceeds the quality of the camera that is built into most tablets. Since I find it far easier to snap a picture with a smaller device than to hold up a larger device like a tablet to snap a shot or film a video, I see no advantage to having a camera built-in to my tablet.

Previously, I have mentioned that the pricing for future tablets needs to be reduced. To achieve this and to make tablets affordable to the masses, companies need to develop an inexpensive, high quality device without cameras. To date, only Acer with a tablet priced at $349 has attempted to create such a unit. Admittedly, this is far below the $499 price that the Apple iPad 2 is commanding, but $349 is still not low enough. We need a 10″ tablet from a reliable company priced at $249, even if this means eliminating the rear facing camera.

Just my two cents. What do you think?

Comments welcome.