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Kodak announces new printer dock
Dennis Hissink : August 3th 2004 - 08:30 CET
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KodakBuilding on its highly successful line of EASYSHARE printer docks, Kodak today unveiled the KODAK EASYSHARE Printer Dock Plus. The new model (US$199.99 MSRP; available beginning this month) quickly and effortlessly makes real KODAK 4x6-inch pictures from nearly any digital source. People can wirelessly transmit pictures from their mobile phone cameras to the Printer Dock Plus, which also prints directly from digital cameras and memory cards, all without the need for a computer. Using the Printer Dock Plus, waterproof KODAK pictures can be printed at home with just a touch of a button, in as little as 60 seconds each. Thanks to KODAK Color Science technology, the Printer Dock Plus delivers pictures with vibrant, accurate colours.
Kodak announces new printer dockIn addition, a new auto enhance button instantly corrects for underexposed (dark) shots, a common occurrence in low-light situations with phone cams and when using digital cameras beyond their flash ranges.

"We're witnessing the phenomenal growth of camera phones, yet many handset owners aren't aware how easy it is to print their pictures," said Richard Stearns, general manager of home printing systems for Kodak's Digital & Film Imaging Systems operation. "Just as we helped digital camera owners solve the dilemma of sharing and printing their pictures, Kodak is doing the same with phone cam owners. We've made significant strides by installing phone camera-friendly KODAK Picture Maker kiosks at retail locations and creating KODAK Mobile Service for online and on-handset sharing. Now the simple-to-use Printer Dock Plus brings that same benefit into the home."

The Printer Dock Plus includes the ability to print one, two, four or nine images on each 4x6-inch sheet, which is ideal for both high-resolution digital camera and lower-resolution camera phone images. In addition, it incorporates PICTBRIDGE technology for printing directly from other manufacturers' cameras; a built-in SD/MMC memory card slot; an optional external 8-in-1 memory card reader for using additional popular memory card formats; and a dedicated multi-function docking connector for KODAK EASYSHARE 600/6000 and 700/7000-series digital cameras. KODAK EASYSHARE digital camera owners also benefit from one-touch picture transfer to a connected computer and the convenience of camera battery recharging in less than 3.5 hours, plus reconditioning for improved Ni-MH rechargeable battery performance.

The new Printer Dock Plus can also be connected to a computer to print pictures stored on a hard drive, and is packaged with a sample photo paper and cartridge kit that enables people to immediately make 10 KODAK pictures. 40-count refill packs (US$24.99 MSRP) include color cartridges and a matching quantity of thermal photo paper, so users don't have to worry about running out of supplies in the middle of a project.

Market Success
KODAK EASYSHARE printer docks have taken the snapshot photo printing market by storm within a year of their debut, achieving the number one market share in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia, according to The NPD Group and GfK. The introduction of the Printer Dock Plus comes at a time when the installed base of camera phones is growing at more than 126 percent worldwide (2003 to 2004), according to InfoTrends. This is buoyed by the recent introduction of 1-megapixel resolution models suited for snapshot printing.

By incorporating built-in infrared (IrDA) and optional wireless standards (e.g., KODAK Wireless USB Adapter for BLUETOOTH technology; available in October), the KODAK EASYSHARE Printer Dock Plus joins other products and services from Kodak that are helping make the growing number of camera phone images into KODAK prints. New KODAK Picture Maker G3 kiosks, thousands of which are being enabled with wireless capabilities, can make pictures from both mobile phone cameras and popular memory cards at retail locations worldwide. Through KODAK Mobile Service (www.kodakmobile.com), Kodak offers camera phone users anytime, anywhere access to all of their digital photos and phone-captured video.

A version of the printer dock that makes pictures in as little as 90 seconds, without the wireless, auto-enhancement, and built-in card reader features, is also available for US$149 MSRP.

Additional Introductions
In addition to the EASYSHARE Printer Dock Plus, Kodak announced several other products today, including extensions of the popular EASYSHARE digital camera line with the new DX7590 (10X optical zoom, 5 megapixels) and CX7525 (3X optical zoom, 5 megapixels) cameras, as well as KODAK Matte Paper for inkjet prints.

New KODAK EASYSHARE software version 4.0 for WINDOWS and MACINTOSH systems, available with the Printer Dock Plus and available for free download from www.kodak.com, provides effortless digital picture organization, editing, sharing and printing. The new version includes an Express Upload feature for keeping OFOTO online picture albums current, the ability to edit pictures in third-party applications, enhanced e-mail powered by Ofoto, and optional Video CD and DVD burning. Its exclusive One Touch to Better Pictures feature takes advantage of proprietary color technologies developed by Kodak to help users get vibrant, true-to-life prints from inkjet printers.

Pictures can also be viewed on televisions connected to the Printer Dock Plus; an optional remote control (US$19.95 MSRP) allows for navigation and even printing from a distance. With its sleek, portable design, owners can even bring the Printer Dock Plus on vacation or to a friend's home, which is made more convenient with the KODAK Printer Dock Travel Bag (US$39.95 MSRP).
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