We prize our smartphone cameras and share photos to social networks daily, but there’s something about holding a physical photo or album you just can’t replace. That’s what Alan Chan finds lacking in today’s digital world, but he has a solution: a tablet.
It’s not an iPad or an Android tablet — no, Joy is a one-trick pony that displays your photos not unlike the former app Storehouse. It’s a 13.3-inch HD touchscreen tablet that runs a proprietary operating system based on Android. It’s meant to sit on its wireless charger in your home as a digital frame for your photos, but you can easily pick it up to jump into all your curated albums.
Most of the work is done via the Joy app for iOS and Android. It pulls images, GIFs, videos and more from your camera gallery, and you decide what shows up on the tablet. The app lets you curate albums with descriptions and text, and you can share them with other Joy users so they can use their tablet for viewing.
“We want Joy to be the final cut, the final edit … like your wedding album — we don’t want every single photo your photographer took at your wedding,” Chan tells Digital Trends.
When on the stand, Joy shows a reel of photos from various albums — like most digital frames. It also lets you hop on a call, done via Wi-Fi, with another Joy user — your screen will be shared, so you can talk to folks on the other end while showing off your album photos.
All of these photos are automatically backed up on Joy’s cloud, of which you get 10GB to use — there are more storage options available, but you’ll have to cough up some extra dough.
The tablet has a five-hour battery life, and it looks somewhat like Google’s Nexus 9 except its back slants out into the middle for better ergonomics.
Unfortunately, what may kill Joy is its price. While the app, which will be available early 2017, is free, the tablet will retail for $500. You can buy a lot of tech at that price points, so for many it will not seem worth it. For what it’s worth, you can get Joy for $300 if you pre-order it.
The device will begin shipping in the summer of 2017, but it’s available for pre-order now.