A disposable camera on your phone, printed & shipped to you

#4 Product of the DayJanuary 15, 2015
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Hey, I’m Greg. Together with Mint Digital, we created WhiteAlbum, a simple camera app that prints the photos you take. The twist is you won’t see the photos digitally. You see them for the first time when they arrive at your door in a beautiful little box. So it’s like a disposable camera except it’s always with you, and you’re not disposing anything, and the photos get sent directly to you, and you don’t have to go anywhere to buy or develop anything — so it’s a lot easier, the quality is better, and it’s less expensive. Just $20 per album (24 printed photos) with free shipping worldwide. But just for you Product Hunters, we’re offering a 40% discount for the first 100 users at checkout. Looking forward to any questions or feedback!
This idea is Hipster to the max but I really like it and it takes the hassle out of getting physical photos developed
@lozzagould What we’re after is the surprise and delight of seeing your photos for the first time. Wanted to bring back some delayed gratification and deliver quality printed photos. But I'll take hipster!
I would love to be able to have them show up in my camera roll (or somewhere) after I receive them.
@corleyh Thanks for the feedback. That's one of many ideas we're exploring for future versions of the app.
@gbeck419 Yea! Like include a code with your physical order that allows us to unlock that batch of photos from within the app to save, share, etc.
@gbeck419 @mrakshaypatel exactly. I like waiting, but want to be able to go back and use the ones I really like. Like negatives...I still like negatives. :-)
@corleyh take a picture of the picture?
At first this sounds like such a step back. "Why would I want to take a photo I cannot immediately see and share?" But it does bring back the delayed gratification and mystery we used to experience when opening that envelope of developed photos. @gbeck419 - what's the backstory? How did you come up with this idea? Everyone else - also check out Flashgap which emails photos from last night's shenanigans and 1-Hour Photo that "develops" photos into your camera roll after one hour exactly.
@rrhoover The idea stems from exactly that: wanting to give people the excitement and anticipation of seeing their photos for the first time. When I was in Korea in 2013 I took hundreds of photos on my phone. Like any normal person, I found myself immediately and constantly looking through those photos. I realized that if I had a real film camera, every photo I captured would be a surprise to me when the film was developed. Disposable cameras are fun for this exact reason. Every photo is a surprise. You're excited to see them. You're taken back to those moments. And they're in your hands — printed. It's a great feeling, and that's what I wanted to recreate with WhiteAlbum.
@gbeck419 Just do a YouTube search for "blind boxes" and "blind bags" and you'll see there are A LOT of people who like to exp a physical/tangible surprise. ;) Millions of views? It's ridiculous.
@mrakshaypatel I'm very nervous to search that, ha!
@gbeck419 Ha! I thought that might sound wrong, but they are harmless toys. My kids found these videos after getting some of over the holidays.
Groovebook, featured on here a year ago, gives you 100 prints a month for $2.99. They're execution isn't great - bad UI/UX, turnaround time might not be great. Also, you don't get the "mystery" component. As a "surprise", it's kind of fun, but the pricing on this seems pretty steep. I think 24 prints shipped to you from Walmart would be about $5. I like this idea, I just think it's overpriced
@JeremyZ123 that sort of low pricing is only sustainable with the high volume that someone like Walmart has. Also consider the world wide shipping and entire app experience. For some, $20 will be more than fair. I truly think that if someone won't spend $20 on this, they probably wouldn't spend $10.
@bryceadams I understand why they cost more. I'm just questioning whether or not their points of differentiation justify the huge disparity in cost. I'm not really considering international - it's worth considering, but ultimately as a buyer I don't factor in whether or not someone also has international customers. I'm used to seeing companies charge international customers more for shipping because it costs more to ship to them... not to pass some of that cost on to the domestic customers. So yes, Walmart is cheaper because they're huge. But they exist... so effectively the extra $15 is paying for the surprise element. Again, I like the idea, but think they'll have to come down on price a fair amount to ultimately scale.
@bryceadams @JeremyZ123 We're focusing on service, convenience, ease-of-use, and high quality prints & packaging. At this early stage, $20 is the price that makes sense to cover those costs. The price of free shipping isn't necessarily passed on to domestic customers as we've got equal footing across the pond!