Product Hunt Daily Digest
July 23rd, 2019

NEW from Square: Robots

Square is pivoting to a robot company. Just kidding. But the company, largely known for its point-of-sale devices that turn iPhones and iPads into cash registers, is expanding into robots.

This week, the company launched Square Photo Studio, which is a robot that shoots professional product photos for store owners. 🤖📸

The details: The robot cost Square over $20,000 and is housed in a warehouse in Industry City, Brooklyn. The idea is to provide e-commerce business owners with an affordable, scalable, and accessible alternative to traditional photography (that’s better than iPhone photos).

How it works: Square will take orders from anyone in the U.S. for photos (with the robot as the photographer). The company will charge ~$10 plus shipping for customers to send a product (weighing less than 20 pounds) to be photographed in Brooklyn, and within two weeks they’ll receive three digital photos of the item. The company is also providing 360-degree product shots for $30.

If this experiment takes off, Square would also open up more studios that specialize around different products. The long-term vision: what Square did for cash registers, it wants to do for product photography — all in the name of helping small businesses close sales. 💸

“Maybe you've tried to take shots with your phone and noticed how difficult it is to get it to look right, or maybe you've spent thousands of dollars to buy a DSLR and struggled with white balance — there should be a better way! Product photos can make or break sales online, and great photography can increase your conversion rate by 30% or more,” Square e-commerce GM David Rusenko wrote on PH.

Notes from the community:

“I've been using Fiverr for my e-commerce photo needs but will try this next time. Although the 14 day turn around is a bit long, the 360-degree photo is a neat feature.” - Michael

“I completely understand the turnaround time, high quality photos take time, not every object photographs the same or even edits the same” - James

For context: Square, the Jack Dorsey-founded company, is also doing pretty well. The company’s stock was up 40% this year, and it hasn’t stopped launching new products throughout its decade-long tenure. Since Square was founded in 2010, it has made credit card machines, monthly payments, a card reader for restaurants, software for invoices, the Cash app, a business debit card, and our favorite, an illustrated children’s book about bitcoin. 🤑

Square Photo Studio

NEW POD! This week, we talked to Senior Associate Editor at Forbes Alex Konrad. He covers: 

🔑“Hustle-porn culture” and how he stays productive
👀 Why the financial crisis was a flourishing moment in tech
🧐 How to handle a crisis as a founder or CEO

Listen here. 👈

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