While at least 48% of the US still camera market is now estimated to be digital, most people will have boxes and albums full of 'old style' printed photos for many years to come. One way of preserving and storing these pre-digital memories is to scan them and convert them into digital images. Hammacher Schlemmer, the company that has been offering unique gifts since 1848, has introduced a digital photo frame with built-in scanner that lets you preserve and view photos 'as easily as feeding bills into a vending machine'.

The photo frame/scanner converts your old photos (1 1/2" x 2" to 4" x 6") into 300-dpi jpg images with the press of a button, and stores them on the unit's 1 GB internal memory that holds up to 3,000 images.

Images are viewed on a bright 8" TFT LCD panel at 800 x 600 resolution in thumbnails, at full-screen size, or in slideshows that can even be accompanied by your MP3 soundtrack. The frame also displays a picture calendar and clock, plays MPEG videos, and is PictBridge compatible.

Two slots allow you to store scanned images onto an MS/SD/xD/MMC/CF memory card or a USB storage device and transfer them to a PC running Windows XP, Vista, 7, or Mac OS X. All functions are easily accessed via buttons or the included remote control.

This isn't the first photo frame that scans on the market. Last year JOBO introduced a similar offering. It seems to be part of a trend, however, for manufacturers to try to differentiate their product from a market saturated with digital photo frames. One of the most recent, Casio's Digital Art Frame, was unveiled earlier in the month at CES.

The photo frame/scanner sells for $199.95