When I won the HP Mini 1000 at CntrStg during CES 2009 I was excited and knew my wife was going to claim this Netbook the minute I got home, which she did. While I’ve worked with it a bit, I haven’t had my hands on it very much, so I never noticed this webcam problem. My wife doesn’t use the webcam either, but I checked it out this morning after seeing this post on SlashGear and sure enough the webcam issue does exist.
The problem? Apparently HP shipped the Mini 1000′s with a black film over the webcam (probably to protect it during the assembly process) without adding a step to remove it along the way. This results in any image from the webcam being, well, very dark and unusable. HP hasn’t officially acknowledged the issue as a defect yet, but according to SlashGear an HP employee filmed a video showing how to pop open the case and remove the film. I guess that’s a way of unofficially acknowledging the issue.
My bad for not checking this out sooner, but I guess I’ll have to give this fix a try.
UPDATE: Thanks to Chris Davies for pointing out that credit should be given to Judie at GearDiary who got the lady from HP to do the video.
UPDATE 2: The video has been removed from YouTube. Hopefully HP will be coming out with an official statement on this.
UPDATE 3: In the meantime here’s another video of the same experience featuring Amisha from Notebooks.com interviewing Sarah HP on the same issue.
UPDATE 4: This video has also been removed as HP reminds us that opening up your device to do this fix can void your warranty. HP also promises a statement on a fix soon.