Anyone who has turned digital photos into a printed photo book via Apple iPhoto or any of a variety of competitors knows how great they are. They make a perfect gift, if you can afford the $20 – $30 they generally cost to create, plus shipping.
Enter UK-based HotPrints, which I was introduced to at the DLD conference in Munich earlier this week. The company is using new printing technology from an undisclosed partner to create high quality photo books on the cheap – just $2.99 plus shipping to the U.S. of $0.75. That’s significantly less than any of the competing products.
And they’re focusing on Facebook, which has a rich collection of already-tagged photos just waiting to be turned into printed books. A quiet beta test of the application has shown that users love it, the company says, and once a user tries it once they average more than three purchases for themselves or as gifts.
Here’s what you get: a printed 25cm x 20 cm color photo book with 8 sheets and 16 total printed pages. You can comfortable fit six photos on a page, although some of the example books they’ve given me has as many as eight photos on a page. The paper is thick, high quality glossy stock.
HotPrints also offers a great tool on Facebook for creating the books that lets you peruse photos by your friends’ names and customize the layout.