By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Falling flash-memory prices have led to a surge in internal capacity for 2009 photo frames, with 1GB memories increasingly common.
Digital Foci will add a new model in its Picture Porter line of portable photo displays. Picture Porter 35 sports a 3.5-inch LCD and will come in 160GB and 250GB versions. Both will feature memory card slots, support for RAW image files, faster file loading than the previous version and the ability to organize and search photos by name and date.
They will ship in the summer. Pricing was not announced.
LiteOn will preview its new Skyla Macer frame, which combines a digital display with an RJ11 jack for connecting cordless phones. Users can pair phone numbers with digital images so that images are displayed for incoming calls. Pricing was not announced.
Memorex's LifeShow ($129) features an interchangeable sleeve in wood, espresso, bamboo and black. The 8-inch frame features an 800 by 600 resolution (4:3 aspect), 1GB of internal memory, dial-based menu navigation and automatic image rotation.
Philips will retool its digital photo frame strategy to hit more aggressive price points in 2009. The company will offer three image-enhancing technologies in its models including SmartContrast, which automatically adjusts the contrast of a photo. Frames will also apply automatic color and skin tone corrections to photos. Models larger than 7 inches will include RadiantColor, a feature which extends the color of a photo to fill out the edges of a frame and eliminate aspect ratio distortions.
Three new models for 2009 include the 3.5-inch SPF2003, SPF3007 and SPF3008, all due in the second quarter for $59, $79, and $119, respectively. The frames feature MP3 and video playback, programmable on/off, calendar and alarm clock functions.
Smartparts will add a key-chain frame (SP15P) to its line. It features a rechargeable battery, internal memory for up to 100 images, USB connectivity and a water resistant housing.
ViewSonic will introduce the Wi-Fi-enabled iClock — a clock radio with a 3.5-inch digital frame. The iClock (VFP350) features 2GB of internal memory, USB connectivity, AM/FM radio, MP3 and WAV music playback and MPEG-1/-4 video playback. It can receive weather, news and photos via RSS. The iClock will ship in the first quarter for $99.
Westinghouse Digital will up the internal memory in its 2009 line to 512MB. The company also fleshed out the product specifications on its previously announced Anne Geddes models, due in the first quarter. Retail prices were not announced.
The Geddes line will include two widescreen models: the 8-inch 08AG1W and 10-inch 10AG1W. Both offer MosiacView for viewing multiple images simultaneously, and the ability to preview a user's own image with a Geddes photo as background.
The company will offer 7-inch and 8-inch frames in both widescreen and 4:3 aspect ratios.
The 7-inch widescreen 0710 features an 800 by 480 display with LED back-lighting, built-in speakers, remote control, auto photo rotation and the ability to designate "favorites." Identical features will be available on the 8-inch widescreen 0810.
The 4:3 aspect 0720 will share the features of the 0710 but with an 800 by 600 resolution display and a rotation sensor to properly orient images when the frame is moved from landscape to portrait. The 8-inch 0820 will offer similar features.
The 10-inch 1000 will feature a 1024 by 600 resolution display (16:9), LED backlighting, built-in speakers, MosaicView, a rotation sensor and auto rotation function. The company's 14-inch 1411 will stay in the line from 2008 with a retail of $299.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.