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Photo Book & Creative Printing Retailer : Unlimited Access: Photo Kiosks Are the Ultimate Photo Connection

April 2012 By Kim Brady
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The digital revolution launched an exciting new era in communicating through pictures. In decades past, it was pro photographers and shutterbugs who were responsible for recording memorable events. Today, mobile phones and computing devices have put cameras into the hands of billions of people—from teens to senior citizens—many of whom had never carried a point-and-shoot camera.

Integrating these devices has provided consumers with virtually 24/7 access to their still and video capture, and those who own smartphones (an estimated 43% of mobile phone users) can share their images instantly via e-mail or post them to one of dozens of social networking and photo-sharing websites on the Internet.

With so many images being shared online, how do photo retailers take advantage of all this high-volume digital business? By providing direct access to social networks and image-hosting websites, today’s photo kiosks are providing the link photo retailers need to tap into social networking and photo-sharing websites, while providing customers with a much larger image pool from which to order prints, posters and photo gifts—all leading to a greater number of orders.

Several photo kiosk manufacturers have provided links to their company’s online photo management and printing services, but these are only helpful to existing customers who store their images on the manufacturer’s website. By linking in-store kiosks to high-traffic websites like Facebook, Flickr and Photobucket, manufacturers are expanding their reach and embracing popular culture by giving consumers direct access to the images they’ve uploaded to their favorite online communities.

Already this year, several photo kiosk manufacturers have announced new links to online albums.

Fujifilm North America Corporation announced upgrades to its latest kiosk at the CES show in January. “Fujifilm’s Multi-Service Kiosk offers the ability to access photos directly from a smartphone and from several online sources, including Facebook, Flickr and Picasa,” said Lenny Marano, senior business development manager, Imaging division. “All the user has to do is select the service they'd like, sign in to their account and select the photos they want, just as they would with a media card.

“It’s just as simple with an iOS-based smartphone,” he continued. “The user connects the phone to the kiosk, selects the photo folder on the screen and selects photos, again, just like they would with a typical media card.”
 

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