Until yesterday, I hadn’t used a photo kiosk since the year 2000. At that time all the kiosk had was a flatbed scanner and maybe a floppy and/or CD-ROM, but I don’t remember (dude, it was seven years ago. Back off!). I was given the opportunity to test out the newest kiosk from Kodak yesterday—the Kodak Picture Kiosk G4—and while most of the things it does I can do at home, there was something about the process of playing with my pictures on the kiosk that was easier and more fun than doing it on my computer.
For starters, there are slots and drives for just about every modern media type: USB flash and hard drives, CD/DVD, all manner of flash cards and floppies, and there’s a flatbed scanner. What’s more, you can send pictures from a cellphone or other mobile device by Bluetooth or IR directly to the kiosk. There are lots of options from simple prints of various sizes to collages and calendars with selectable borders to the cheesiest of greeting cards. You can do some minor edits, too (color correction, crop, brightness, contrast, etc. etc.).
So why is heading to a kiosk more fun than doing the very same thing at home? Well, I’m betting it’s the touchscreen interactivity of it all, on a system geared for easy use at a fast pace. It forces you to concentrate on working on your photos and there’s something about just tapping on a screen that made it more enjoyable. (Though I f*cked around so much that I likely would’ve angered anyone waiting to use the machine.) The Bluetooth feature alone is worth a stop at the kiosk. In a couple minutes I had a really nice collage of pictures I took with my phone on a recent trip.
The point to all this: Don’t neglect your friendly neighborhood photo kiosk. Even if you think you can do what it does at home, the kiosk experience can be more productive and ultimately more satisfying.