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The Picture Frame Didn’t Need Reinventing

by Travis Harvey | November 12, 2009November 12, 2009 1:48 am PDT

frameYears ago, companies like Polaroid and Kodak thought it would be a great idea to reinvent the picture frame.  The solution was a digital picture frame that stored digital pictures and displayed them in a slideshow format.  They probably expected to get these frames into every home replacing outdated, single-picture frames.

The biggest problem with the product market is obviously the price.  Photo frames are exponentially more expensive than a standard frame.  If you’re going to replace all your picture frames with digital, it’s not going to be cheap.

When you put a picture in a frame, it generally has some sort of meaning.  Whether it’s your family, friends or a vacation memory, there’s a reason you choose that picture.  Instead of seeing a meaningful picture framed for display, we get a slideshow of random images from who knows where.  I’ve never visited someone’s house and sat through hundreds of photos that randomly display on a digital picture frame.

Also, these frames need power.  A vast majority of digital frames operate off of batteries.  Batteries are annoying to replace, especially on devices you don’t noticeably use.  What’s that?  The frames can run off AC power? Not only is your frame limited by AC plug locations, outlets are rare enough as they are.  Usually you’ve got other things that need plugging in.  Who wants to continuously pay money to feed a picture frame? This is was a recession, folks!

Until the cost of these digital frames drops substantially and battery life is vastly improved, buy a $5 frame and be done with it.  There’s no hassle and you’ll always be displaying a picture that was actually worth putting in a frame.  Not everything in our lives needs to be digital, and in the case of picture frames, it’s probably better that way.  Do you already own a digital picture frame?  Was it worth it?  If you’re a fan, we want to know why.


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