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Fotr takes you back to photography's bad old days

Engadget Engadget 23/09/2016 Daniel Cooper
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Before digital, photographers of all calibers had to be careful, since there were several limits imposed on what they could do. For instance, you only had a limited number of exposures per reel and you had to pay to print all of your images, even the duds that were destined for the trash. It all sounds dreadful, but that doesn't mean that companies like Fotr aren't going to try and recreate it for the smartphone age. The app, very simply, forces would-be snappers to be as careful as they used to, since Fotr will print out every image you snap with it.

Once you've downloaded Fotr, you're encouraged to buy a "roll of film," that's actually a set of prints that'll be delivered to your door 10 days after shooting. If you want a traditional 6 x 4-inch, 24-frame color roll, it'll cost you €18 ($20), while the most expensive reel produces 7 x 5-inch, 36-frame color images for €30 ($33). You have a choice between monochrome and color "films" and a series of Instagram-style filters that imitate the look and feel of classic photo stocks. For instance, if you select BW3, your images will mirror Kodak's Tri-X monochrome film, while C2 is modeled on Fuji's Velvia which comes with a blue tint and brighter colors.

It looks as if the mainstream photography world is, at least on the surface, rekindling its love with physical photos. Fujifilm's been keeping the genre ticking over with its Instax cameras (including ones with Michael Kors) but this year's Photokina was full of other entrants. Even Leica -- Leica! -- has a printing camera called the Sofort, and Amazon has launched its own Shutterfly-style cloud printing service. Although, all told, it's probably still better for 90 percent of smartphone photographers to be able to pick and choose one good shot from a thousand.


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