Sharing photos on social media is fun, but it's still nice to have printed copies of our favorite shots. A new mobile photo printer from Polaroid lets users print out photos that they have taken on their smartphones. The Polaroid Zip produces small color prints in around a minute.
The Zip isn't the first mobile printer to be offered by Polaroid. The firm's PoGo Instant Mobile Printer, for example, was available in 2008. Like the PoGo, the Zip prints 2 x 3-in (5 x 8 cm) photos using Zero Ink paper from Zink Imaging.
Zink Paper forgoes the need for ink, instead using a specially formulated paper embedded with dye crystals. By heating different areas of the paper for specific times and temperatures, the dye colors are released and the image is created. Polaroid says the result is "full-color, high quality, long-lasting and smudge-proof images without ink cartridges, ribbons or toner."
The Zip measures 2.91 x 4.72-in (7.4 x 12 cm) and weighs 186 g (0.41 lb). It is pwoered by an internal, rechargeable lithium-ion battery that will print up to 25 photos on a full charge. It connects to a user's smartphone via either Bluetooth or NFC and is operated using an accompanying app that is compatible with iOS or Android. The only physical control on device itself is a power button.
The app allows users to select and edit images for printing. Users can adjust settings such as brightness and contrast, choose from 12 different filters to apply, create collages and add stickers and emojis to their images. It is also possible to print business cards from ready-made templates and print in a "secret view mode" that prints a unique QR code and only reveals the image when viewed with the app.
The Polaroid Zip will be available to buy in the first half of this year and will retail for US$129.99.