More on Eye-Fi

First, I got a ton of questions about Eye-Fi. First, Eye-Fi's URL is http://www.eye.fi/.

Second, here's answers to a bunch of the questions received in my comments today about the Eye-Fi device:

Rob said "you could just get a WiFi or Bluetooth enabled camera." True. They had one of those, a Nikon, at the offices, but it wasn't easy to use. It didn't work with services like Flickr and Nikon programmed it to be just a replacement for a USB cable. Eye-Fi could do a LOT more, and because Eye-Fi aren't locked into a specific manufacturer's choices, it could work with a lot more interesting stuff. The Xbox scenario, for instance, that I put out there isn't possible with the Nikon WiFi camera.

Also, there are more than 100 million digital cameras already sold that don't have any wireless capabilities.

Jake asked "$100 for what exactly?" Well, let's say a 1GB SD Memory card costs about $60 to $100 retail. Well, Eye-Fi could make a card that has BOTH a WiFi system on it, as well as the memory, for $100 to $150. Yuval didn't want to talk pricing because it really depends on a lot of factors (he thinks there's a subsidization model possible where companies with services, like Ofoto, that make money, could pay to subsidize cards). So, the amount you'd pay at retail could greatly vary. But would certainly be a lot less than you'd pay for a new WiFi-enabled camera.

Chris asks "I would love to know how this works." Unfortunately I can't give away all the details, Eye-Fi hasn't finished the development and Yuval asked me not to talk about how it works technically. But it works, and it works easily (or it could, depending on partnerships that still need to be finalized — keep in mind this technology is still in alpha stage, so some of what I talk about here won't work when the final product ships, and other things that we haven't thought about might be enabled). Another scenario that could be made to work? You go out and shoot. You come home. You turn on your camera. Your photos are automatically pushed to Flickr.

Chris Wood says: "it would be too simple but many cameras have a video out connector that you can just plug into the yellow RCA jack at the front of the tv."

Um, Chris, I don't even know where the cords are for my camera, and my TV doesn't have an input on the front of the TV. Also, so you can hook your camera up to the TV. That solves that scenario. Now, your friends ask you to print. What do you do? Or, you want to put the photos on Flickr? What do you do? Get out more cords. Geeky.

Diane says: "Unless it is as easy as pressing ONE button, it still wouldn’t work."

Hey, Diane, you'd love this. No buttons to push. Just turn your camera on when you're within your WiFi network at home (or possibly at WiFi hotspots that are open around the world) and everything happens — automatically. When he took my picture my picture appeared on his computer without him touching the camera further. Obviously there's a bit of setup, but that's easy. Anyone who can use a Web browser could setup the system.

>Doesn’t the 360 already support plugging the camera into it directly through USB?

Yes, but again, I have to have cords. If cords are so cool, why are the Xbox 360s controllers wireless?

>It’s ok if your camera doesn’t have wifi but memory cards are the wrong place to put wifi I think.

You don't need as much memory if you have an Eye-Fi. Why? Cause your camera's memory is just a cache. As soon as you're within a WiFi hotspot the camera could spit the photos to your favorite photo sharing site (BubbleShare, for instance, lets you upload and download full photo files, so you wouldn't need to store them on the local camera).

Also, someone asked about metal cases on cameras. The Canon he demoed to me had a metal case and the WiFi worked just fine. Keep in mind that the WiFi antenna AND the memory are stored on the same card. It's amazing what the miniturization has done due to cell phone R&D. I remember the engineers at Winnov back a decade ago struggled to get less stuff onto a card the size of my hand, much less the size of my thumbnail. That's why it was inspiring to me.

Scott says: "One thing all these kinds of tools should have is the ability to read the EXIF data and rotate the picture on screen for you (ala Picasa)."

This does exactly that, and a lot more. Want your photos to automatically go to Costco for printing? You could do that. In addition to possibly sending them to Picasa, or to Flickr, or to other services or to your Media Center PC.

I want one. I'll throw away my SD memory card when this comes out.

Comments

  1. [...] hier. Geen reacties tot op heden Geef een reactie RSS-feed van reacties op dit artikel. TrackBack URI Plaats een opmerking e-mailaddres wordt niet weergegeven, HTML toegestaan: <ahref="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong> [...]

  2. Will you be able to share your photos directly to other nearby cameras say, in a party, instead of having to get the email address of everyone with a camera?

  3. Will you be able to share your photos directly to other nearby cameras say, in a party, instead of having to get the email address of everyone with a camera?

  4. This is definately going on my “watch list”. I have a P&S Canon… uses an SD card. The WiFi bit would be very nice… makes it easier to handle the macro photography… no more moving the camera to view images!

  5. This is definately going on my “watch list”. I have a P&S Canon… uses an SD card. The WiFi bit would be very nice… makes it easier to handle the macro photography… no more moving the camera to view images!

  6. Eye-Fi’s vison reads: “The future of consumer imaging is wireless, real time, and location aware.”, if they are integrating Wi-Fi or Bluetooth to a flash card- seems likely a GPS could be integrated also or link to a Bluetooth enabled GPS Cellphone for tagging location data to photos. Very interesting WWMX-like(http://wwmx.org) scenarios there.

  7. Eye-Fi’s vison reads: “The future of consumer imaging is wireless, real time, and location aware.”, if they are integrating Wi-Fi or Bluetooth to a flash card- seems likely a GPS could be integrated also or link to a Bluetooth enabled GPS Cellphone for tagging location data to photos. Very interesting WWMX-like(http://wwmx.org) scenarios there.

  8. “If cords are so cool, why are the Xbox 360s controllers wireless?”

    Because Microsoft is taking kickbacks from the battery cartels?

  9. “If cords are so cool, why are the Xbox 360s controllers wireless?”

    Because Microsoft is taking kickbacks from the battery cartels?

  10. That said, I can definitely buy the WiFi on the camera thing – as long as I can put this in my existing camera an upload stuff automatically.

    There are a ton of technical considerations – is it standalone or does it require something specific on the camera? Does it work with WEP/WPA? – but assuming they figure this out it’s a great idea.

    But if it doesnt’ work with any existing camera, then it’s worthless. If i have to buy something new, I’ll just buy one with the WiFi already integrated. And then I can use one of my 4GB cards I mentioned above :)

  11. That said, I can definitely buy the WiFi on the camera thing – as long as I can put this in my existing camera an upload stuff automatically.

    There are a ton of technical considerations – is it standalone or does it require something specific on the camera? Does it work with WEP/WPA? – but assuming they figure this out it’s a great idea.

    But if it doesnt’ work with any existing camera, then it’s worthless. If i have to buy something new, I’ll just buy one with the WiFi already integrated. And then I can use one of my 4GB cards I mentioned above :)

  12. [...] Robert Scoble met with Yuval earlier week. Here’s his initial write-up as well as a follow-up, where he goes into greater detail. photo credit: Scott Beale tags: photos (T) , photography (T) , Eye-Fi (T) posted by Scott Beale on Friday, April 28th, 2006 Comments RSS feed | Trackback URL [...]

  13. [...] There’s lots more buzz on this. See Robert Scoble and Scott Beale, who are just as excited as I am about Eye-Fi. No guidance on when this will be available, but they have working prototypes. If Eye-Fi owns the intellectual property around this, look for them to license the technology to flash memory producers. I will buy this the second it becomes available. No Tags Categories: Company & Product Profiles | Bookmark this post with del.icio.us [...]

  14. [...] Good news, a very good news indeed. Eye-Fi is essentially a SD Memory card with a Wifi adapter built in. As someone with a decent SD digital camera and a flickr account this could be really cool for me – especially if it would automatically download to my flickr account. Their first product will be a 1GB SD card with built in Wifi. For about the same price as a 1 GB flash card sells for today There’s lots more buzz on this. See Robert Scoble and Scott Beale, who are just as excited as I am about Eye-Fi. No guidance on when this will be available, but they have working prototypes. If Eye-Fi owns the intellectual property around this, look for them to license the technology to flash memory producers. I will buy this the second it becomes available. [...]

  15. ///// Chris asks “I would love to know how this works.” Unfortunately I can’t give away all the details, Eye-Fi hasn’t finished the development and Yuval asked me not to talk about how it works technically.

    ==================================

    Apparently this works via the special EyeFi Server acting as the redirect-middle-layer.
    The software in the Card and the EyeFi server is probably synched via your personal input info…

    The beauty of this is the freedom NOT to be locked in to any one manufacture.

    Too bad their official Website was so sparse on any real info.

    eye.fi/overview.htm

  16. ///// Chris asks “I would love to know how this works.” Unfortunately I can’t give away all the details, Eye-Fi hasn’t finished the development and Yuval asked me not to talk about how it works technically.

    ==================================

    Apparently this works via the special EyeFi Server acting as the redirect-middle-layer.
    The software in the Card and the EyeFi server is probably synched via your personal input info…

    The beauty of this is the freedom NOT to be locked in to any one manufacture.

    Too bad their official Website was so sparse on any real info.

    eye.fi/overview.htm

  17. [...] enlaces: Techcrunch, TinyScreenfuls, Scobleizer y Laughing Squid Añadir a del.icio.usMenea este artículo Tiempo de lectura: 0’50 minutos Escrito el: Domingo 30 Abril 2006 Autor: Jordi Abad Clasificado bajo: Internet Palabras relacionadas: eye-fi, fotografia, cámaras digitales, tarjetas de memoria flash, wi-fi Artículos relacionados: [...]

  18. [...] The product is not being commercialized just yet, though development is well underway thanks to some angel funding, and the company is seeking more funding as production gets underway. Robert Scoble gave them a visit recently, and seems rather excited about the product. The price? Not much more than current SD cards. And they’ll hopefully be available this year. [...]

  19. [...] Il y a beaucoup de buzz autour de ce sujet. Lisez notamment les billets de Robert Scoble et Scott Beale qui trouvent ce produit tout aussi génial que nous. Aucune précision à propos de la date de sortie d’un tel produit, mais les premiers prototypes sont déjà prêts. Si Eye-Fi arrive à gagner la bataille des brevets sur ce produit alors ils pourront commencer à vendre des licences de leur technologie aux grands fabricants de carte mémoire et je serai par le premier à en acheter une. Tags: flash, wifi, digitalcameras, appareilsphotosnumeriques, techcrunch, web2.0, web_2.0 Catégories : Sociétés et produits | Bookmark this post with del.icio.us [...]

  20. [...] Sin embargo, hay dos bloggers que la han probado (Robert Scoble y Scott Beale) y que se han reunido con Yuval Koren (Presidente y CEO de Eye-Fi) – Fotos de LaughinSquid (Scott Beale) – Fotos de Robert Scoble (ver siguientes) – Artículos (1 y 2) de Robert Scoble – Artículo de LaughinSquid (Scott Beale) [...]

  21. [...] What’s even better is that this isn’t vaporware. THe CEO of Eye-Fi, Yeval Koren, has been meeting with mega-bloggers Robert Scoble and Scott Beale and demoing the prototype model. Scott, from Laughing Squid, even has pictures of his meeting with Yeval. Kudos for using the non-traditional media outlets for creating a humongous buzz. Eye Fi, wireless camera, Wireless Media, Wireless Network, Wireless SD card [...]

  22. Hi,

    Sounds like a great idea.

    You may want to look into efotoexpress, which provides a tool/technique for lossless compression, to reduce the volume of data-to-be-sent to 1/30th of its original.

    Best,

    Saied

  23. Hi,

    Sounds like a great idea.

    You may want to look into efotoexpress, which provides a tool/technique for lossless compression, to reduce the volume of data-to-be-sent to 1/30th of its original.

    Best,

    Saied

  24. I wonder how this would affect DSLR people with CF cards but who didnt purchase the super pro (eg D2X) cameras. This might solve a problem i have been itching to solve since i bought my D70s! Does anyone know if there is a chance there will be CF cards available, and will it work with these “more complex” cameras?

  25. I wonder how this would affect DSLR people with CF cards but who didnt purchase the super pro (eg D2X) cameras. This might solve a problem i have been itching to solve since i bought my D70s! Does anyone know if there is a chance there will be CF cards available, and will it work with these “more complex” cameras?

  26. Robert,

    Any talk on whether they plan on trying media other than SD? I got a CF-using cam because I was squicked by the added DigitalRestrictionsManagement on the SD: am I outta luck and I have to wait until demand gets up there, or did they mention anything at all?

  27. Robert,

    Any talk on whether they plan on trying media other than SD? I got a CF-using cam because I was squicked by the added DigitalRestrictionsManagement on the SD: am I outta luck and I have to wait until demand gets up there, or did they mention anything at all?

  28. Eye-Film: Every Digital Camera Goes Wi-Fi

    TechCrunch's Michael Arrington takes a look at Eye-Fi's planned Eye-Film 1GB Wi-Fi SD card, which includes a Wi-Fi antenna within the card itself. "No guidance on when this will be available, but they have working prototypes," Arring…

  29. [...] 那 Scoble 在說些什麼 ? Just turn your camera on when you’re within your WiFi network at home (or possibly at WiFi hotspots that are open around the world) and everything happens — automatically. When he took my picture my picture appeared on his computer without him touching the camera further. [...]

  30. I already sent Eye.fi a mail about this: why not make mini sd cards so i can use my smartphone as a wifi voip phone?

  31. I already sent Eye.fi a mail about this: why not make mini sd cards so i can use my smartphone as a wifi voip phone?

  32. [...] There’s some noise about the Wi-Fi enabled memory cards from Eye-Fi.  I think it’s a fantastic idea.  However, I’m not sure it’s actually going to take off.  Personally, the only way I’d use it is if it came with some slick new software to automatically download my photos.  Really, it doesn’t take much time to take out the card and click a couple times to transfer to my computer.  But, if this new card could automatically transfer my photos, well, then, I’d be sold.  Maybe it’s a single button on the card, or some other proximity sensor to sense closeness to the computer.  I don’t know.  But if it saves time, I’m all for it. [...]

  33. [...] There’s lots more buzz on this. See Robert Scoble and Scott Beale, who are just as excited as I am about Eye-Fi. No guidance on when this will be available, but they have working prototypes. If Eye-Fi owns the intellectual property around this, look for them to license the technology to flash memory producers. I will buy this the second it becomes available. Tags: [...]

  34. This is a great idea, but ultimately it must incorporate both options… one to upload to an ftp server on the net, and another to upload to your computer (mac or pc). Then the other issue is that when this comes out, and is based on 802.11g, pre-N will be closer to finalized and then the device will need to be upgraded again. Why not make it firmware upgradable to the finalized N standard? Do they simply provide a middleware solution or is there software on the card that the user “Sets up” and then the WiFi card knows where to send (instead of pushing to a “preset” server that is programmed to forward)?

  35. This is a great idea, but ultimately it must incorporate both options… one to upload to an ftp server on the net, and another to upload to your computer (mac or pc). Then the other issue is that when this comes out, and is based on 802.11g, pre-N will be closer to finalized and then the device will need to be upgraded again. Why not make it firmware upgradable to the finalized N standard? Do they simply provide a middleware solution or is there software on the card that the user “Sets up” and then the WiFi card knows where to send (instead of pushing to a “preset” server that is programmed to forward)?

  36. I think its going to need some kind of on/off button. Without it, the constant search for wifi is gonna suck the battery dry.

    I know you don’t want cables, but a mini-USB dongle (USB memory stick) could probably work better, most cameras have a mini-USB slot making it a dongle universal. Also controls battery usage because without needing a button. And since its not inside the camera, it would get better reception. And the cost will be seriously cheaper not having to work inside the footprint of a SD or CF card.

  37. I think its going to need some kind of on/off button. Without it, the constant search for wifi is gonna suck the battery dry.

    I know you don’t want cables, but a mini-USB dongle (USB memory stick) could probably work better, most cameras have a mini-USB slot making it a dongle universal. Also controls battery usage because without needing a button. And since its not inside the camera, it would get better reception. And the cost will be seriously cheaper not having to work inside the footprint of a SD or CF card.

  38. I’ve been seeing the hype for several months on this product and most of the writeups show its available soon. Well, its Q3 2006 and still no lauch date.

    Worse yet SD will be the first format released? Yawn…

  39. I’ve been seeing the hype for several months on this product and most of the writeups show its available soon. Well, its Q3 2006 and still no lauch date.

    Worse yet SD will be the first format released? Yawn…

  40. could this be the first development in the process for disposable digital cameras?

    create a unique sid, set the camera to upload to specific print service, and then the camera can be disposed once the file limit has been reached.

  41. could this be the first development in the process for disposable digital cameras?

    create a unique sid, set the camera to upload to specific print service, and then the camera can be disposed once the file limit has been reached.

  42. [...] Dejando la broma, Eye-Fi se trata también de una tarjeta SD que lleva integrada además de la memoria propiamente dicha, un módulo Wi-Fi que nos permitiría transmitir las fotos directamente a Flickr, o a tu web favorita. Podéis encontrar más información en Pixel y Dixel, además de su web Eye-Fi. También podéis ver pruebas en las webs de Robert Scoble y Scott Beale. [...]

  43. I am concerned by the quality of the memory itself. Is it as good as the SanDisk Ultra II as regards the speed ? Who is manufacturing the memory part of the Eye-Fi card ?

  44. I am concerned by the quality of the memory itself. Is it as good as the SanDisk Ultra II as regards the speed ? Who is manufacturing the memory part of the Eye-Fi card ?