Attempting to lure digital camera owners the photo industry is pushing high-tech processing kiosks.
The machines are made by Kodak, Fujifilm and others and take images from CDs and memory cards and print them on glossy paper. Some 40,000 of the kiosks already exist in stores around the world.
Kodak – the industry leader – installed the first self-service machines in 1994. But those machines only handled limited printing and enlarging. Kodak now says it has about 22,000 machines in North America.
Four-by-six-inch glossies from Fujifilm kiosks cost about 49 cents each – with other models offering comparable prices. The machines offer on-screen previews that allow users to pick only the photos they want and many even allow them to burn images onto a CD.