Instagram on Thursday sent out mysterious press invites—through snail mail, no less—that suggests a possible printing service is on the way. The invite itself contained an Instagram shot printed on a 4-inch by 4-inch wooden square, with a slot on the back for hanging the image on the wall; the press invite also invites attendees to, “Share a moment.” There have been rumors Instagram is prepping a private messaging feature, but it sure appears like printing will be the event’s main focus, which takes place Dec. 12 in New York at 10 a.m.
There are already third-party services that offer printing options, but none are directly affiliated with the Instagram platform. The new feature will likely give users the ability to not only print individual photos, but booklets of all your favorite shots as well. Many high-profile outlets, such as Flickr and Apple’s iPhoto software, make it super simple for consumers to request prints of their photos, and Instagram’s possible new feature will probably be very similar.
With the event taking place at about the halfway mark through December, we’re not so sure if things will be up and running in time for Christmas, but you never know. That’s assuming a printing service is inbound. We could still see a private messaging feature announced, but that could just be secondary to the bigger news, which is heavily hinted as a printing service.