You gotcha iPhone? Check. You gotcha Instagram app? Check. You gotcha sleek wall-mounted instant photo printer? Hmm, maybe soon…
The premise is this: you’re at a party, or some big corporate shindig, and everyone’s snapping away with their Instagramatics (hey, look at the retro dude with an actual camera!), and they’re all sharing online because the wifi is super hot today, but wait! Stop! Wouldn’t it be great to have some actual prints of these hot little shots?
Yes, yes it would. The Instaprint device sits on a nearby wall and uses that same super hot wifi to monitor all the Instagramming that’s going on around it. It watches out for photos with the right tags (all corporate shindigs these days have tags, don’t they?) and prints ’em out.
Like Polaroids of old, the color inks are contained inside the paper. No ink cartridges needed. Unlike the Polaroids of old, the prints come out fully printed and ready to share. No shaking and blowing required.
Now, before you cry “I MUST HAVE ONE!”, be warned: the Instaprint is not a consumer-ready product. Not yet.
Michael Lipton, co-founder of New York inventors and Instaprint makers Breakfast, said only a few prototypes have been built so far. You might be able to rent one – contact Breakfast if you’re interested – but at corporate shindig prices. Roughly $5,000 will get you a couple of printers, plus the support staff necessary to keep them working and topped up with paper during the event, plus a handful of iPod touches for the unlucky party-goers who’ve turned up without a compatible iThing to call their own.
But who knows? Maybe if this idea takes off, we might be able to buy an Instaprint for the home for a fraction of that price in a few years from now. Either that, or our iThings will have printers built-in.