Update on January 30, 2015: For those interested in buying one, Prynt has launched its Kickstarter campaign. The good news: It has already shattered its $50,000 goal, so it’ll be funded (there’s no plans for a stretched goal). To get one, you’ll need make a preorder pledge of $99. The first shipment, scheduled for August 2015, have all sold out; the second shipment is scheduled for October 2015.
Smartphone cases are usually about protection, extra battery life and style. A startup called Prynt wants to inject a little more shareable fun into things with a smartphone case that prints photos in about 30 seconds. It also has the ability to instantly turn physical photos into videos.
Prynt’s eponymous case slides onto your smartphone and plugs into the bottom of the device. Hold the phone horizontally and you’ll have a handgrip and trigger button on the right side of the Prynt case. Once you snap a photo, you can send it to the Prynt and wait for it to print.
The case’s direct connectivity with your smartphone means no Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connection is necessary. While the current prototype of the Prynt takes about 50 seconds to take a photo and print it out, the consumer-ready version will need fewer than 30 seconds to complete the process. It will also be able to hold 10-30 sheets of photo paper.
While this Polaroid camera-like functionality is certainly alluring, the more intriguing part of the Prynt case is an augmented reality feature baked into its camera app. As you take a photo with the Prynt’s camera app, it records a video of what your phone’s camera lens is pointed at leading up to the actual moment you snap a photo (e.g., your attempts to fix your hair before taking a selfie).
Once you print out the hard copy of the photo, anyone who points their Prynt case-equipped phone at it will see a play button overlaid in real time on the photo, which when tapped will play the video captured along with the photo within the borders of the photo itself, making it seem as if the picture was replaced by a video. It essentially turns a tangible photo into a portable video you can physically share with friends.
This augmented reality feature “will bring those pictures to the 21st-century,” said Prynt CEO Clement Perrot in an interview with TechCrunch.
The French startup has been working on the Prynt case since January and will launch a Kickstarter campaign in early 2015. The Prynt will cost $99 and fit standard smartphone sizes. The company is working on cases that will fit phablets like the iPhone 6 Plus.
(This article was originally published on November 16, 2014.)
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