Consumer Storage Help from Avanquest
With the storage of consumer digital image files becoming a hot button topic within the imaging industry, a new solution from a company called Avanquest is gaining some steam lately. The company recently announced the release of SendPhotos 5, a new digital photo sharing and storage solution for the consumer market. The SendPhotos 5 software, as the company explains, “is an easy-to-use software-service combination that provides seasoned digital photographers and novices alike with innovative options for sharing photos through e-mail or online while at the same time affording them peace of mind about the privacy and preservation of their digital images.”
SendPhotos 5 subscribers essentially receive a private online locker with 2 GB of storage at www.sendphotos.com and what Avanquest describes as a powerful desktop application that simplifies the process of backing up, organizing and editing photo collections. This latest version of the software has also added the ability to create private online communities where friends, families and other groups can share photos. SendPhotos subscribers can invite an unlimited number of guests to browse photos and add their own to the private Web site. SendPhotos will notify the subscriber when guests have added photos and will automatically download them to the main photo collection on the user’s PC(s). Where SendPhotos 5 differs is with their “Photo Story” creator, which brings multiple photos, personalized captions and a variety of colorful themes together into a customized page that can be displayed in the online locker.
While the software is being sold as a direct-to-consumer package currently, Avanquest is looking into partnering with interested retailers to offer the service to customers through retail. Pretty slick tool for only $29.95, as users can purchase the SendPhotos 5 software and get 2GB of online storage space, with additional storage available. For more information, visit www.sendphotos.com.
Memjet Print Solution
Memjet is a relative newcomer to the imaging industry and their latest offering involves the Memjet Photo Retail division of their business. The Memjet technology is claiming to offer retailers a service/kiosk that produces 1600-dpi, photo-quality color prints at speeds of 1-2 seconds for 4×6 photos, utilizing a small 1-2 ft. footprint, with, they tell us, “dramatically lower device and consumables costs.”
Memjet Photo Retail is essentially an independent supplier of Memjet printing technologies, including printheads, driver chips, ink, software and reference designs. “We provide Memjet technology at the component and subsystem level, enabling manufacturers to develop retail countertop kiosks, pedestal-mount kiosks and behind-the-counter printers under their own brand without any additional technology investment,” the company explains. For further inquiries, visit the company’s Web site at www.memjet.com.
To help scrapbook retailers bring digital into their creative world, Lucidiom Inc. has initiated a new print program dubbed Luci Connect. Based on the Luci creative photo kiosk program, Luci Connect lets scrapbookers upload their 12”x12” pages online from their home desktops or from a laptop within their scrapbook store in order to print their designs.
“Everything for scrapbook retailers to jumpstart their digital sales is included in Luci Connect: Web site design and hosting, photo software, an ink jet printer, paper and ink. Plus during CHA, we gave retailers a free laptop when they signed up for Luci Connect,” said Lucidiom VP of Scrapbook and Craft Business Development Kesley Anderson. “Retailers will profit from print sales, upsell opportunities and the increased foot traffic Luci Connect drives.”
Luci Connect allows consumers to order three types of prints from the store’s Web site. First, consumers can upload 12”x12” digital scrapbook pages that they have created and print them through the scrapbook retailer. Second, consumers can use the 700+ pre-designed 12”x12” Luci templates to drop in photos and journaling, creating beautiful digital scrapbook pages in minutes. Third, if the consumer just needs photos printed for creating traditional layouts, they can use the 13”x19” Luci Print & Cut sheets and receive the photo sizes they need on one sheet. Check out www.lucidiom.com.
Lensbabies POP Helper
Lensbabies, the maker of the innovative DSLR accessory lens Lensbaby, is providing retailers with an interesting slideshow demo that can be played on a digital frame that briefly explains how their unique lens accessory works and shows sample images taken with the product. Lensbabies supplies the slideshow on an SD card and the retailers can play it on a loop on any digital frame.
“The Lensbaby slideshow on our display model digital picture frame has worked really well for us. The Lensbaby photos look beautiful, which shows off the frame really nicely and gets the photographers curious about Lensbabies. The images also inspire our customers’ imaginations about being more creative with their photography, and that’s great for Pro Photo Supply,” explained Tony Napoli, Purchasing Supervisor at Pro Photo Supply. Check out www.lensbabies.com to find out more.
Whitech recently announced that Fujifilm Holdings Australia has purchased a 35% holding in the company. In a statement released by Whitech the company explains, “The prediction of expansion in the marketplace through the popularity of consumers being able to create and personalize items such as photo books, canvas prints, greeting cards, stationery, gifts, collages and DVD movie presentations has prompted Fujifilm to become a shareholder in Whitech.”
Whitech, a software development company is the creator of the Photo.Teller CREATIVE kiosk software. The technology allows consumers to order digital prints and personalized photo merchandise through kiosks.
Whitech president, Steve Delnawaz said, “This is a major highlight as a small business owner. Our staff has worked so hard to develop competitive and cutting-edge software. Photo.Teller software has been recognized in the industry as a market leader by winning nine International awards, distributed by some of the industry’s biggest players and in many different countries.”
The company’s first kiosk software was released in 2001 when, as Delnawaz explains, “it was an entirely new concept in the photo industry. Kiosks turned out to be instrumental in the transformation of the industry, which we got to play a large role in with our software. Fujifilm becoming a shareholder adds to our success and will assist us to keep producing more innovative quality products.” Check out www.whitechsolutions.com for more information.
Durst Signs With PTS
Durst Image Technology U.S., llc recently announced that the company has signed an agreement with PTS Consulting & Service Group to distribute the new Durst Jota Album Printer in the United States. The completely redesigned Jota Album Printer is a fully automatic inkjet printing system – aimed primarily at the retail photo segment – that produces “photo quality” photo books and other popular image-based products in an efficient, affordable workflow.
PTS, located in Reading, Pa., is a solutions provider to the photofinishing industry specializing in digital workflow platforms, hardware and software integration, and traditional lab equipment sales & service.
Help for Images on Handhelds
As the handheld mobile device market continues to explode, offering consumers a better way to share and organize the digital images they are storing on these devices should be big business as we move through 2007 and on into 2008.
Enter Trenton, New Jersey-based Exclaim, a branded platform provider of wireless applications that allow sharing and managing of images, video, and rich media. The company recently launched what they are calling a scalable platform to monetize consumers’ content on mobile devices. They are claiming their Pictavision DMM (Digital Media Management) as the industry’s first user-generated, content exchange platform for wireless carriers and handset vendors.
The Pictavision DMM has been powering user-generated content exchange for more than three years for some of the leading mobile photo and video sharing applications including Pictavision, Kodak Mobile Link, and CNET Webshots Pictavision. The company tells us that carriers and handset vendors will now have the ability to integrate a scalable platform into their wireless consumer offerings to easily connect camera phones, PDAs, and even digital cameras to virtually any digital media exchange point. Exchange points include Web services, such as blogs, photo sharing portals, and social networks, such as Kodak Gallery, FlickrT, etc. Exchange points include photo printers and merchandisers, retailers such as Walgreens, desktop computers, enterprise systems and public safety applications.
Additional DMM capabilities include automatic correction of uploaded photographs; carrier-branded mobile blogging, photo and video sharing portals; self-service consumer provisioning tools; free-form video viewing; and tagging of uploaded content. Exclaims added that their DMM has what they are referring to as a roadmap to increase the value proposition of exchanging user-generated content over wireless networks, including content synchronization with home media systems, adaptors for enterprise and professional applications, and enhanced content tagging for search. Check out www.exclaim.com for more info.