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Printer Hardware

Polaroid: This Time It's Digital 176

Posted by Soulskill
from the who-doesn't-enjoy-voluminous-gadgets dept.
MrSeb writes "Long before Facebook and Twitpic, photos were shared by simply handing someone a print. No camera made this easier than the once-ubiquitous Polaroid. Nothing represented instant gratification better in the film era than having a print develop before your eyes, ready to hand out in a minute. Unfortunately for Polaroid, the advent of digital photography sounded the death knell for its iconic instant print cameras. A brief reprieve in the form of inexpensive sticker-printing versions was ended by the cellphone camera revolution. Now, after a decade in remission, Polaroid has returned with a full-up digital camera that incorporates instant printing technology. The Polaroid Z340 is a 14MP digital with an integrated Zink-enabled (Zero Ink) printer. In a nostalgic touch, the new camera prints 3×4-inch images, the same size as the original Polaroid film cameras. Remarkably, all this fits in a one-pound, seven-ounce package, about the same weight as a mid-range DSLR."
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Polaroid: This Time It's Digital

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  • Missing the point. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Ethanol-fueled (1125189) on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @08:47PM (#37993500) Homepage Journal
    You're missing the point. With the total lack of privacy online and the risk of leakage of so-called "private" pictures, it's about time for a camera that can print real pictures on impulse.

    A real-life example - many years ago, My girlfriend and I used a Polaroid to manufacture child pornography of ourselves and some of our friends (we were all 15 at the time). It was a crime most heinous, but high-school kids don't deserve to be charged and have their lives ruined because of it.

    But Ethanol, why not just have them printed at a drugstore?

    I was a film developer at a drugstore. All images are archived (yes, even at the "print your own" kiosks) and every picture on a roll of film is seen by the developer, because we have to manually correct for CMY, density, and a host of other factors for maximum customer satisfaction - which means that your trick of taking a few "normal" pics followed by a bunch of nudes and finally more "normal" pics doesn't keep your dirty secrets from us. Fortunately, I saw a lot of nudes but never saw anything questionable.

  • by mariushm (1022195) on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @08:56PM (#37993550)

    Unfortunately, at 20$ for 30 sheets of the special photo paper it needs, I don't see it being successful.

    I guess they're probably trying to use the classic inkjet printer selling scheme, where the printer is cheap but the cartridges are expensive... though their camera is 300$.

    It can also print just 25 photos with its battery which is not clear if it's removable or not - strange number considering the paper is sold in packs of 30.

  • by icebike (68054) on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @09:12PM (#37993714)

    Not only are some trying it, but Polaroid is not alone.

    The linked site contains a link to Zero Ink, which shows other products on the market.
    Some of them, like the Tomy Xaio look a little more appealing than the Polaroid.
    http://www.zink.com/TOMY-xiao [zink.com]

    I suspect there is a market for this, but probably not in digitally savvy countries where
    everyone has a smartphone and can email the picture and put it on facebook before the
    Polaroid can even print out a single copy.

    Presumably these devices retain a digital image, so that capability may be added
    just in time for the whole idea to go bust again.

  • by uniquename72 (1169497) on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @09:16PM (#37993756)
    There already is an analog Polaroid available. Its called the impossible project, and their store in Vienna was packed when I was there a few weeks ago.
  • There is no Polaroid (Score:5, Informative)

    by El Puerco Loco (31491) on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @09:34PM (#37993964)

    It's just a brand name now that's licensed out. Edwin Land's company is long gone.

  • by syousef (465911) on Wednesday November 09, 2011 @12:12AM (#37995402) Journal

    At present the stuff isn't cheap and either due to limited market or patents on the paper technology, no generic compatibles appear to exist...

    Nor are they likely to....

    http://www.zink.com/how-zink-works [zink.com]
    "ZINK was developed over several years and has generated an IP portfolio that includes over 100 patents and patents pending"

    There's more on the page about patents and registered trademarks than the tech itself. Tell me again how IP law encourages creativity? This will be tied up for decades, which won't allow it to take off.

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