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Amid the 150,000 attendees wandering through 2,500 booths at the 2013 International CES, there was a little action in photo kiosks. Now that the Consumer Electronics Association has partnered with the Photo Marketing Association (PMA), there is a dedicated photography area at the LVH (formerly the Las Vegas Hilton). This is where the photo retailers search for the latest in profitable services, including photo kiosks.

Out in the forefront of the PMA section was Storefront.com, the British Columbia-based white-label kiosk software provider. Storefront's technology drives some of the major brands of photo kiosks, and runs on most hardware. The major Storefront.com announcement was the release of its cloud-based NEO PhotoKiosk, which adds shrinkage combating settings. Orders can be set to pending until they are released, using a PIN from a computer, tablet, smartphone or other wireless device. The NEO PhotoKiosk also has embraced social media, integrating with Facebook for printing images on personalized gifts and prints.

Dakis was another vendor showing a cloud-based photo kiosk. The Full HD Cloud kiosk offers connectivity to phones and tablets, as well as Facebook.

Eastman Kodak executives showed its new widescreen Kodak Picture Kiosk G4XL kiosk in a meeting room, assuring customers and press of plans to continue to its personalized printing business. Company execs reinforced the message that Kodak has more than 100,000 photo kiosks in use worldwide, among leading retailers like CVS, Target, Tesco, Bartell's, Rial and Carrefour. Also featured was the partnership with On-Demand Books to offer perfect-bound books on-site, as well as enhanced options to use content from mobile devices.

Fujifilm was also showing kiosks, although they were overshadowed by the company's camera displays. On exhibition were the new Fujifilm VNX Photo Terminal and the Fujifilm Multi Service Kiosk (MSK) software, designed to expand functionality into financial and prepaid services.

The Fujfilm VNX terminal has a 16:9 aspect ratio widescreen, a 1080p high-res monitor, and USB 3.0 connectivity, and the MSK software adds the capability for mobile phone top-up and other transactions. The new Fuijfilm ASK-300 dye-sublimation adds a matte printing mode.

As an add-on service, Digital Storage Solutions is offering a USB Flash Drive Writer and Dispenser. Following the trend of CD-ROM-less laptops, DSS offers a solution for backing up images onto a USB flash drive. Also shown was a prototype for downloading images from a phone directly to the drive.

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Gary Pageau
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