Y Combinator alum Kicksend is part of a growing group of companies that are taking digital items and helping users score physical goods — in this case, printing out digital photos that they’ve shot and stored on their mobile devices. Since users increasingly are using their smartphones as their primary point-and-shoot devices, that only makes sense, especially since constant connectivity means those users can also easily share their media.
The latest update to Kicksend’s mobile apps seeks to make it even easier for users to share photos between groups of friends or family, and to send physical copies of those photos to the people they care about the most. Earlier this year, Kicksend announced a partnership with Walgreens that allowed its users to instantly have actual copies of their digital photos printed out at any one of the retailer’s locations around the country. Now, in addition to Walgreens, Kicksend users will be able to get prints of their digital photos from other local retailers, including Target and CVS. Altogether, that will provide more than 15,000 locations where users can print out photos.
That’s important, as another big update to the app is the ability to send physical copies of prints to friends and family members. The new feature, which Kicksend calls “Print to Family,” will send an email or SMS to folks that users want to send physical photos to, asking them to choose a local retail location where they can pick those photos up from.
In addition to offering a wider range of retail locations to choose from and ability to send prints to friends or family members, Kicksend is working to improve the process of sharing photos digitally. The newest version allows users to easily create and share albums of photos with their nearest and dearest, thanks to smart album grouping. Users can also like, share, and comment to each other within small groups, enabling them to keep conversations around their content going.
Kicksend was a summer 2011 Y Combinator grad, which has pivoted from sharing large files to sharing and printing photos. That’s a business that seems to be going well for it so far, especially since raising $1.8 million in seed funding from True Ventures, Digital Garage, SV Angel, Start Fund, and Milo Founder and CEO Jack Abraham.