Instaprints

It’s not really that often that I print anything, especially from my iphone. The photos don’t even usually make it as far as the computer at home. They either sit on the phone until such time as I break or sell the phone or they get uploaded to instagram, eyeem or any one of the numerous other photo sharing websites around these days. The whole instagram prints phenomenon pretty much passed me by. My opinion of the majority of the photos I post to instagram is quite low so I’d never usually consider them as candidates for printing. I came across some folks on twitter mentioning printic and thought I’d check it out. Seemed to tick all the boxes that I usually require. Low (or preferably no) effort, comes in phone app form and requires very little actual thought to get it going. However, the price. Being a hipster never did come cheap. Each of their fauxlaroids comes in at about 79c. Yes, thats euro cent, not dollar cent. I knew I was going to get a few prints, at least twenty, so I damn sure wasn’t paying nearly a euro a go for them.

So I went somewhere I hadn’t been for quite a number of years. Since 2009 in fact, going by my order history. Photobox. The first thing that struck me when opening the site is that they were running an ‘instagram print’ offer. Of course, an ‘instagram print’ to them is nothing but a 5×5 print, doesn’t really matter where it comes from. I bought some print credits to take advantage of the offer and ended up getting fifty prints for about 16 cent each. That doesn’t include postage of course.

From here on, this is probably going to sound like an advert for photobox. You’ll have to forgive me for any blatant shilling I appear to be doing. If only I was getting backhanders for this…

The redesigned photobox interface can now pull photos directly from dropbox, instagram and a few other places. I had the files ready to go on dropbox. Ordering was straightforward as it always was. The checkout process advised me that a few of the files weren’t really suitable for 5×5 prints (because of resolution, it wasn’t offering critique on my photography or anything) but I ignored the warnings and carried on.

One point that irked me slightly is the shipping charges. 1-49 prints is one price and for the sake of one extra print, I ended up being charged a couple of euro extra for shipping. Well, I really ended up initially being charged a hell of a lot more than the rate posted on their delivery info section, but after a quick chat with one of their support/customer service guys (via the handy in-checkout chat window I might add) I was offered the correct rate. Well, plus a little extra discount for my inconvenience. An annoying issue quickly solved. Hit the button and the prints were here about four days later. Not too bad really, seeing as some of the UK to Ireland post I’ve had lately has been ten days or more. That’s a whole other rant.

The prints are as you see above from my lazy attempt at photographing them. I went for matt, something I always seem to default to with photobox orders. It’s not great matt paper but I prefer it to the gloss option. Some of them are, as the checkout warned me, a little soft. I expected that and can’t fault them for it. Not too bad for 16 cent a print. Or eh, about 30 cent a print once you factor in postage.

Now to find something to do with them.

 

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