What do you do with the photos from your smartphone – upload them to social media sites, maybe copy them to your computer or tablet to show to friends and family? Well, Rollei seems to think you should print them more. It's just announced two photo printers which connect to iOS or Android devices, and are specifically designed for releasing your smartphone images from their digital confines.
While Rollei grandly claims that devices like its new printers make ordering photos over the internet obsolete, we don't know too many people who diligently order prints of their smartphone snaps, so maybe it's also a case of trying to encourage phone-ographers to print more. Either way, the Rollei iSY Photo Printer and the Rollei iSY WiFi Photo Printer promise to make it easy for smartphone users to produce quality photos at home.
Forgoing physical buttons, the printers are controlled using the Rollei Photo App (iOS or Android), and operation is said to be as simple as choosing the images you want to print. While both models feature a docking station and the ability to connect devices (including PictBridge-compatible digital cameras) via USB, the difference between the two is fairly self-explanatory; the Rollei iSY WiFi Photo Printer adds the ability to print wirelessly.
Use of thermo-sublimation in an all-in-one cartridge technology – which combines 260 gram-paper and color ribbon – ensures prints similar to those produced by a traditional lab … rather than the printed-at-home style we know all too well. It takes 55 seconds for each photo to print. Photographs have a resolution of 300 x 300 dpi, plus they're waterproof and fingerprint-resistant.
Each cartridge can produce 36 frameless full-color (256 gradations and 16.7 million colors) prints in 10 x 15 cm format (4 x 6 inches), though users can also produce panoramic pictures up to 10 x 42 cm (4 x 16.4 inches). Automatic cutting also means you can leave the scissors in the drawer.
While the new printers aren't game-changingly different to the likes of Canon’s Selphy photo printers – which can also produce quality prints wirelessly direct from Android and iOS devices – they do offer an alternative if you like your thermo-sublimation devices without buttons, but with an iPhone dock.
Measuring 17.55 x 15.5 x 12.2 cm (6.9 x 6.1 x 4.8 inches), the Rollei Photo Printer will go on sale in black or white guises later this month for €160 (that's around US$215). The WiFi version will be available in black for €180 ($240). Replacement cartridges will then set you back €14 each ($19) making each print €0.38 ($0.52).