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Wi-Fi camera emails pictures without a PC

点击量:   时间:2019-03-02 14:14:09

By Barry Fox Kodak is to offer consumers a Wi-Fi enabled camera that can take high-quality digital pictures, then email them to friends and store them automatically in an online image bank – all without the need to use a PC. The new EasyShare-one camera is a pocket emailer, with direct connection to the internet via a public Wi-Fi hotspot or a home Wi-Fi system. Kodak research suggests 60% of digital photographers do not upload their pictures to a PC, either because they do not know how, cannot be bothered or are away from home. “People go on holiday, fill up the memory card, then delete their pictures and start again,” says Philippe Kalmbach, Kodak’s marketing director in Europe. The same research shows that 70% of digital snapshooters never share pictures. If they use a camera phone to send pictures, the Multimedia Messaging System they use restricts the file size and degrades the image. “Internet access direct from the camera is the missing link,” Kalmbach claims. Nikon recently announced a compact Coolpix camera with built-in WiFi, for wireless connection to a computer or printer, but this does not allow internet access. EasyShare-one will start selling in the US, Europe and Middle East for about $850 in October. It will have a 4-megapixel sensor, creating high-quality, 700-kilobit files. When the Wi-Fi function is activated – by popping up a small wireless antenna – the camera sniffs for a hotspot. If the Wi-Fi operator has done a deal with Kodak, the camera and hotspot “handshake” to connect the camera to Kodak’s mail server. The photographer can then email the image via the camera’s touch-sensitive LCD screen. The full-resolution file is also emailed and stored for free in Kodak’s EasyShare Gallery online database. Wi-Fi camera emailing competes head-on with cellular and 3G picture phones. So Kodak has been negotiating deals with telecoms operators who run both cellular and Wi-Fi services and already has several major operators on board, including Orange and T-Mobile. Hotspot access will be free to the end of 2005. After that owners will be offered a free month and followed by a subscription of around $12 per month. This compares with the $24 per day charged by some hotspots. The new camera also shoots Quicktime video,