Do you know any wireless enthusiasts who are enamored with digital photography? If so, they would probably enjoy the Wallflower picture frame. Hailing from Wallflower Systems, this product combines digital imaging and Wi-Fi. At about $599, it's pricey. But if you're looking for an extra-special gift, it may be just the thing.
Just like a conventional picture frame, this product can be displayed on a table, shelf, or desk. Its easy-to-use software allows users to compile photo albums on a personal or notebook computer. They then transfer the pictures to the Wallflower's built-in hard drive. The photos are displayed in full color on the 1024-by-768-pixel display (See Photo). New images and updated display instructions can be easily transferred via its IEEE 802.11b wireless-network connection. There's no need to connect cables or shuffle memory cards.
Upon being plugged in, the picture frame automatically finds the local Wi-Fi network. Using software that's built into Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X, users can simply drag and drop images into the Wallflower folder on the desktop. The product automatically adjusts image size. It also creates letterboxes so that images are optimized for the 8-x-10-in. display size. Through a web-browser interface, changes can be made to the album and the image orientation (i.e., flip time, portrait, or landscape).
The viewable area of the Wallflower is a 12.1-in. LCD screen. This 8-x-10-in. photo area is about four times larger than other digital picture frames. The overall frame size is about 18.5 x 15.5 in., depending on the specific model. These handcrafted picture frames come in a variety of finishes ranging from light maple to dark cherry and black. Typically, they're priced at $599, depending on the frame style and finish.
The Wallflower digital picture frames can be ordered online from the company's web site. That site also contains detailed information on PC operating-system compatibility and wireless hardware support. Starting in late 2004, the Wallflower digital picture frame will be available from select retail outlets across the United States.
Wallflower Systems, Inc.
1302 Lincoln Ave., Suite 202, San Jose, CA 95125; (408) 924-0860, FAX: (408) 924-0864, www.wallflower-systems.com.