HP has been caught with a bit of egg on its face - the company has been forced to recall over 675,000 Photosmart R707 digital cameras from around the world because of potential safety issues. It appears that the batteries can overheat when the camera is connected to an AC adapter or docking station. There have been reports that at least one camera has actually caught fire, but no injuries to people have been sustained as a result.
Introduced in August 2004, the Photosmart R707 was sold for around US$250 to $400, and something in the region of 679,000 of the affected cameras have been sold across the globe. The problem in question stems from the device's firmware, such that when the camera is plugged into an AC adapter or docking station, it attempts to charge non-rechargeable batteries such as the Duracell CP-1. HP has, in addition to the recall, provided updated firmware to correct the issue.
The incident will not help to enhance HP's desired image as "the brand that comes to consumers' minds when considering a camera purchase." But it should be noted that the company has also released several new generations of digital cameras, including the R725, R727 and R927, with larger LCDs and more features.