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Businesses Printer

Can Fotobar Make Polaroid Relevant Again? 149

The years have not been kind to Polaroid. The company has gone through a couple of bankruptcies, and has tried to reinvent itself with a number of less-than-popular products including: an Android powered "smart camera," and a digital camera that incorporates instant printing. They hope to reverse their fortunes now by partnering with a startup called Fotobar and plan "to open a chain of retail stores where customers can come in and print out their favorite pictures from their mobile phones." The first is scheduled to open in February in Delray Beach, Florida, and the goal is to open 10 locations across the country before the year is out."
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Can Fotobar Make Polaroid Relevant Again?

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  • But why? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Waffle Iron ( 339739 ) on Sunday January 06, 2013 @05:50PM (#42498511)

    I don't see the point of printing photos these days. All our old prints sit gathering dust in boxes in a closet. The only time anyone uses them is when I get them out as I gradually scan them all into a computer, hopefully before they all fade.

    Now we look at our old photos more than we ever used to, blown up to a nice size on our TV in the living room. Added bonus: offsite backup copies in case of fire/tornado/whatever.

  • by arth1 ( 260657 ) on Sunday January 06, 2013 @06:28PM (#42498737) Homepage Journal

    The buggy whip people found a new lease on life in pr0n and related activities. The camera people need to do the same.

    Get rid of the plastic and the electronics, make it look like a '60s pentax spotmatic or violate some design patents and make it look like a vintage hasselblad, and above all else make it liquid proof. That might actually sell.

    Part of the appeal of Polaroid photos was the privacy they gave. You could take intimate photos knowing that (a) the photo store clerk wouldn't see the pictures, and (b) there was no negative that later could be abused. If someone was handed the freshly taken photo, the one with the camera didn't have a copy.

    Digital cameras with a home printer solves (a), but not (b). This pathetic attempt from the new Polaroid trade mark owners is a step in the wrong direction, as it removes (a) too.

  • by icebike ( 68054 ) on Sunday January 06, 2013 @06:41PM (#42498799)

    Physical copies of pictures from 50 years ago stored in common household conditions are barely legible. Digital photos at least have the advantage of consistently producing exact copies, so with a bit of care you can indefinitely prolong their lives. With paper or film you're copying already deteriorated image with techniques that add their own imperfections to blur and blemishes of previous copyings and years.

    Ah, no, the 50 year old photos stored in the common household shoebox are, more often than not, perfectly "legible".
    Virtually always so if they were in black and white.

    In fact the lament of the current generation of digital photos is that they ALL die with the first hard disk failure, or
    on-line account lapse, or they are buried under a mountain of crap in a Facebook account.

    The old printed snapshots usually required a much larger disaster such as a fire or flood to totally destroy them.

    Because virtually nobody prints digital photos, just about the only people who ever see them are the original photographer.
    Nobody has the coffee table photo book anymore. These used to be easy to create, the natural side product of having to
    have your film developed and printed.
    Now you have to have special papers, Ink, a pretty good printer, and a lot of technical skill and patience to print them out at home.
    Photo albums are actually harder to make today.

    As for showing your digital photos, the only thing worse than the obligatory slide show is hovering over someone's shoulder
    looking at photos on a laptop, or the few emailed samples.

To be a kind of moral Unix, he touched the hem of Nature's shift. -- Shelley