Wireless technology has moved rather slowly within the imaging industry as most have felt consumers needed more time to catch up with this technology. Well, apparently that was then and this is now.
Eye-Fi Inc. (www.eye.fi), makers of the first wireless memory card for digital cameras, recently announced the Eye-Fi Explore, a new card designed to make photo sharing richer, easier and more convenient. Unveiled at the O’Reilly Where 2.0 Conference, the Eye-Fi Explore allows users to automatically upload photos from more than 10,000 hotspots while away from home or from their home wireless network. It also automatically tags users’ photos with information about where the image was captured.
“The Eye-Fi Explore delivers the two enhancements most requested by our users,” said Jef Holove, CEO for Eye-Fi. “Our geotagging service automates what is today a compelling, though time-consuming and manual, experience. And, our hotspot access will allow travelers, bloggers, and anyone on the go to upload, share and save their pictures before they even get home.”
The Eye-Fi Explore allows users to automatically send photos directly from their camera to their PC or Mac, and to one of 25 online photo sharing, printing, social networking, or blogging sites using their home wireless network. Eye-Fi partnered with Skyhook Wireless to provide geotagging capabilities and Wayport to enable hotspot connectivity for the Eye-Fi Explore. Through this partnership with Skyhook Wireless, the Eye-Fi Explore will allow users to map where their photos were captured with automatic geotagging. The card uses built-in wireless technology to locate nearby Wi-Fi access points when pictures are captured within the Skyhook coverage area. The Eye-Fi service uses this information to encode each photo with geographic locations, and the images arrive on the user’s computer and online sharing account automatically tagged.
Wireless technology has clearly hit the fast lane and consumers in the imaging sector appear ready to change lanes.