By David Ponce
Alright, so we’re still trying to get our heads properly wrapped around Instaprint. It’s supposed to be an inkless printer (relying on ZINK technology instead) that works with Instagram, the photo application popular with all the hipsters. Simply tag your picture with a predetermined hash, and the machine will print it. The idea would be to have this setup at, say, a party. And then people who take pictures with Instagram and tag them appropriately will be able to simply walk up to the Instaprint machine and collect their pics, Polaroid-style. It’s even possible to set it up to work without a hashtag; a predetermined set of GPS coordinates gives everyone within a certain area access to the printer.
It’s a neat idea, but we have a few questions. Who is this for? Obviously, you could end up having to print an enormous amount of pictures, so whoever owns this has to be prepared to pick up the tab. Other than venues like bars or clubs, who will buy this? Which brings us to the other question, that of funding. Currently on Kickstarter, the project needs to raise $500,000 to get off the ground. At $400 a pop, that’s a lot of printers. As of this writing, 53 have been pre-sold and the project is up to roughly $40k. It’s not bad, but it’s a far cry from the half million they need. We really would like to see them succeed and wish them well, but we’re just not sure there’s a market there…
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