Posts Tagged ‘web2.0’
In March 2011 we reported that an iPhone photo sharing app called Color had raised a whopping $41 million in funding before it had even launched. Sequoia Capital, one of the most prominent VC firms in Silicon Valley, invested more money in Color than they had originally invested in Google. Now, just three short months later, Color is still struggling to find users while its less-funded competitors are leaving it in the dust.
Group Story is a new photo service that’s centered around building photo books collaboratively with other people who photographed the same event. For example, the parents of a soccer team could pool photographs together and create a photo book documenting the soccer season.
Everything is done through a simple web interface, and after photographs are uploaded, you can use any of the photographs in the group to create a page. Once pages are created, you can use any of the pages in the group to create a physical photo book.
The resulting 8×8 inch books cost $13 for 20 pages in a softcover format, and $25 for hardcover. Additional pages are 50 cents each. There isn’t currently any feature for sharing the resulting books through the web, but providing an embeddable photo book that users can post online and/or link to might be a good future feature.
Some of the larger players in the photo space are also thinking hard about making photos more collaborative and social. Just early last month Facebook acquired group photo sharing service Divvyshot.
Y Combinator-funded photo startup Picwing started out in 2008 as a typical photo-sharing service that also beamed your photos to a fancy, $249 digital picture frame that you could use to easily share photos (i.e. baby pictures with your parents). Turns out people weren’t willing to drop that much cash on a digital frame when similar products were bigger, cheaper, and similar in functionality.
Picwing then decided to focus on printing photographs, and realized that many people would like to share more physical prints than they actually do. For example, people might want to share photos of their young children with relatives, but don’t have the time to have photos printed and mailed.
Using the Picwing app for iPhone application or Android, you can send full-res photos directly to the service from your phone. Picwing then automatically prints and mails the photos to up to 6 recipients for a subscription fee starting at around $5 a month for each recipient. Photos can also be added to accounts from your computer or through email, and you can choose to have 15 photos mailed up to twice a month (for a slightly higher fee).
We like the business model, and think there’s definitely a need that Picwing meets. Is this a service you would use?
Late last week we reported that Facebook had acquired the young photo sharing startup, Divvyshot, and will be shutting the service down.
Troovi is a service that’s similar in functionality — one that focuses more on exchanging photographs than it does on providing a permanent way to share them online.
Rather than provide permanent photo sharing and storage, it’s geared more towards collaborative private albums (called collections) that your family and friends can all contribute to. While services like Flickr or Facebook are great for sharing photographs from a particular trip or event, they don’t provide efficient collaboration features or ways to download entire albums at full resolution.
Troovi allows up to 250 photographs per collection, and one click downloading of the entire collection at full resolution as a ZIP file. This is great for people looking to quickly exchange photographs rather than simply view them.
Free collections are supported by advertising and expire after 30 days of inactivity, while premium collections start at $1.49, expire after 90 inactive days, and allow an unlimited number of photos per collection.
While it looks like Facebook is attempt to make exchanging photos easier with its Photos application, it’s unlikely it will rival Troovi in allowing you to download hundreds of full resolution photographs from events, since Facebook doesn’t store full resolution versions of uploaded images.
Divvyshot, a Y Combinator funded service that launched publicly last month, has been acquired by Facebook. Divvyshot’s 3 employees will begin applying their know-how to Facebook Photos and the service will be shut down within 6 weeks, leaving its 40,000 users to find somewhere else to share photographs.
The service was based around the idea that photographs can be better shared between friends and family by allowing people to easily contribute to a pool of photographs based around people, places, and events. For example, a group of friends on vacation could contribute photographs to the same collection, which is called an “event”.
There’s already similar ideas of collaboration built into Facebook (i.e. viewing all photographs tagged with a certain person), but it looks like Facebook wants to take the idea even further.
Israeli startup Dropico thinks there’s time to be saved in online photo management. The company has just launched its flash-based web application that allows you to manage your photographs across various web services (i.e. Facebook, Flickr, Twitter, etc…) all in one place.
Each photo sharing service is displayed in a separate box, allowing you to easily drag and drop photographs from one service to another. Transferring a photograph from Facebook to Flickr took literally a couple seconds, and photos can be moved in batch as well, but currently requires clicking a checkbox on each one.
A problem we found was that giving after giving Dropico permanent access to your social media account, there doesn’t seem to be any way to revoke permission or to change accounts unless you go to that application (i.e. Facebook) and revoke the permissions there.
Despite the current lack of advanced features and minor usability flaws, the idea behind Dropico seems pretty solid. Also, TechCrunch reports that the service is planning to provide an aggregate stream of your friends’ photographs across social networks, allowing you to follow all the latest photos in one place.
SnapKnot is a new service that aims to make it easy to search for and compare local wedding photographers.
Wedding photographers can list themselves on the website by creating a “SnapKnot”, which is a widget-style box containing such things as sample photographs, company name, years of experience, professional affiliations, price range, and location. These SnapKnots are then displayed on the main page and can be filtered by location and price range.
Photographers that interest you can be bookmarked by adding them to a private “My SnapKnots” page with a single click.
Launched just over a month ago, the service currently has just under 400 photographers listed, and aims to have 1000 listed by this summer.
Check it out and let us know what you think! Does this service hit the nail on the head for wedding photography?
SepiaTown is a website that lets you view historical imagery of particular locations using Google maps.
If you have historical imagery, you can contribute to the project by uploading them to a particular location as well. Since the project is just getting started, finding historical imagery in smaller cities or towns may be difficult, but larger cities like San Francisco, London, Paris, or Moscow are filled with interesting photographs.
As the SepiaTown collection comes to encompass thousands of locations throughout the globe it will allow people to interact with history and geography in a new and exciting way; to tour the landscapes, cityscapes and events of history with a scope and breadth never before possible.
This type of “street view” historical imagery seems like something Google might want to integrate into their applications as well.
Here’s the description on their website:
Fotobabble lets you create talking photos in two clicks. Simply upload a photo and then record your voice directly through your computer to create a talking photo. You can easily share it by e-mail, Facebook, Twitter or embed it into a blog or website.
It’s free and all completely web-based. No software to download, just register and get started in seconds.
Here’s an example Fotobabble found on the website that we embedded into this post: