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Gretag Pushes Open Architecture Kiosks

Orlando – Kiosk competition looks to be fierce in 2002 as a bevy of manufacturers announced ambitious marketing strategies aimed at expanding digital printing at retail at the PMA show, here, today.

For its part, Swedish manufacturer Gretag announced its ‘print@retail‘ campaign which will include a technology partnership with Polaroid.

According to the company, the key to the new strategy is the ability to provide an open architecture kiosk platform into which Gretag can integrate existing and future photo-quality printer technologies, and digital input media, as they are developed. New technology will either be proprietary or a result of third party partnerships (the company has already partnered with Epson for a series of kiosks).

One such partnership was announced yesterday with Polaroid. Gretag is exhibiting a prototype version of its Digital Photo Station kiosk that incorporates Polaroid’s Opal printer technology. Opal is capable of producing 4 x 6-inch color prints from digital media at the rate of one per second (see Feb. 25 TWICE).

Opal was combined with Gretag’s user interface/image processing software and kiosk technology, to provide retailers the ability to produce photo prints from digital camera media.

In addition to the Gretag/Polaroid kiosk, Gretag is exhibiting a number of additional Digital Photo Station kiosks to demonstrate the flexibility of its new open architecture kiosk platform.

‘This open systems capability and partnering strategy will eventually provide on-site photo processing retailers and new markets with the ability to customize their on-site photo operations to suit anticipated digital service needs, print volumes, and choices in printer vendors and printer technology,’ said Gretag CEO Dr. Patrick Jung.