By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
As the critical holiday season dawns for the digital frame category, several vendors added new models in the hopes that last year's success can be duplicated despite the economic downturn.
LiteOn IT will ship its first digital photo frame with a built-in scanner to dealers at the end of this month.
The Memoir frame marks the debut of LiteOn's new consumer brand Skyla.
The 8-inch Memoir incorporates a 4-inch by 6-inch scanner into the base of the unit. Scanned photos can be saved to the frame's 1GB of internal memory or to removable memory. The scanner can produce a 600 dpi image.
The $219 frame features an 800 by 600 resolution screen (4:3 aspect), MP3 playback, motion JPEG and MPEG-1/-4 playback, programmable on/off and a built-in light sensor that adjusts the panel's brightness.
Additional features include automatic image rotation and a clock/calendar function.
LiteOn, which manufactures frames for Hewlett-Packard, among others, will use its Skyla brand to debut novel frame products to differentiate itself in a crowded market, said Michael Ostwind, sales and marketing director.
Though its initial frame is designed to appeal to older users with shoeboxes teeming with prints, the Skyla lineup will mostly be targeted at a Gen-Y demographic that doesn't have a "firm brand affiliation," he added.
Ontario-based Gentec International will ship a new Wi-Fi-enabled photo frame with a built-in email address to dealers this month.
The iQ 8-inch PhotoM@il frame features wireless connectivity, a dedicated email address and a rechargeable battery with a two-hour life span.
The unit ships with two interchangeable frames and features MP3 playback, 2GB worth of internal memory and an 800 by 600 resolution display (4:3 aspect ratio).
The iQ also offers a clock/calendar function and a programmable on/off mode.
It will retail for $319.
Nextar will ship a pair of photo frames embedded into Christmas tree ornaments this month.
The ornament frames will be sold in green (N1-517) and red (N1-519) and feature a 1.5-inch LCD display, internal memory for storing up to 60 photos and a slideshow mode.
The frames are powered by two included AAA batteries. A USB cable is also included.
The ornament frames will retail for $19.99.
Two 8.4-inch digital photo frames are due from Jobo this month. Both units feature 800 by 600 resolution displays, a 500:1 contrast ratio, a 4:3 aspect ratio, calendar/alarm clock mode and card readers for the popular memory card formats.
The frames feature automatic on/off functionality, onboard image organizing via folders plus the ability to convert color images to black and white.
The PDJ801 features 1GB of internal memory and a rechargeable li-ion battery. It will retail for $179.
The PDJ800, for $159, offers 128MB worth of internal memory.
ViewSonic will also add two 8-inch models to its line. The DPG801BK and DPG807BK feature a new "SwifTouch" touch-screen interface that illuminates hidden control buttons when needed. They also include 512MB worth of internal memory and feature an 800 by 600 display (4:3 aspect ratio) and a clock/calendar function.
The DPG801BK can display Motion JPEG videos. The DPG807BK adds support for MPEG-1 and MPEG-4 video. Both frames will retail for $129.
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