Dead-ended? New Software Shows a Way Out for Photo Industry
posted Thursday, November 24, 2011 at 12:26 AM EDT
Atlanta, GA; Oldenburg, Germany - 11/24/2011. Ecce Terram, a global digital imaging solutions company with headquarters in Atlanta, GA and Oldenburg, Germany, has introduced version 2 of its Photo2lab Online Client. The new software for online photo processing and ordering provides seamless social media integration and fully supports open standards like HTML5 - unique in a market where most industry-strength solutions are still based on Adobe's Flash™ technology.
Ecce Terram launches its new software in the wake of Adobe's recent announcement to abandon its Flash™ player for mobile platforms. Version 2 of the Photo2Lab Client covers the complete range of photo products - from prints, posters, and canvas to photo gifts, personal to print products such as photobooks, postcards, and photo calendars. It is based on a critically acclaimed software architecture ("PMA Retailer Hot Pick 2010"), and optimized to support HTML5, the next-generation open web standard that is currently rapidly reshaping the way content and services are presented online.
Will solutions that support HTML5 present a future-safe alternative for large retailers and photo service providers, who are looking for a way out of a dead-end technology? Ecce Terram's new online client, for example, is already backed by the company's long-time experience with large-scale deployments for customers like a famously cost-conscious large European retailer.
"For large retail chains and photo service providers, the launch of our new Photo2Lab Online Client sends a clear message," says Frank Simon, president and CEO of Ecce Terram USA: "They will be able to offer the full range of modern photo products and mobile ease-of-use that today’s customers demand." Simon: "Due to Ecce Terram's strong commitment to HTML5, they will also be able to avoid the costly burden that comes with having to develop for outdated or highly proprietary mobile technology platforms."
By 2013, the customer base for photo services and products will have gone mobile, predicts Simon, pointing to recent industry surveys. With the launch of the new Photo2Lab Online Client, his company joins the ranks of companies - the largest ones are Apple, Google and Facebook - who in the past weeks have made clear that they see HTML5 as a technology platform that will dominate the way online media are used and interacted with, for years to come.
According to Ecce Terram, recent surveys indicate - and most industry analysts agree - that 2012 will be year where worldwide sales of smart phones and tablet computers will surpass those of desktop and notebook computers. "You don't want to bet your company's photo business on developer solutions that support outdated, or esoteric proprietary platforms," says Mr. Simon. "If you do that - within 18 months, you are likely to reach less than 50 percent of the online users your company should reach."
The rapid recent shift in the online and mobile technology field has many large providers of photo processing and product services, like pharmacy chains and large electronic retailers, worried about how to protect their existing investments, while being able to develop new product lines. Industry analysts familiar with the photo services market like Frank Baillargeon, founder and president of f/22 Consulting, agree with Ecce Terram's assessment: that the safest and most cost-efficient solutions will have to include full support for the HTML5 standard.
"HTML5 will make it far easier for photo retailers and their service providers to develop and deploy critical cross-platform mobile applications," says Baillargeon, whose Eagle, Idaho-based firm provides market research and consulting services to the photographic industry.
According to Baillargeon, the combination of quality image capture and immediate access to satisfying photo product shopping experiences on mobile devices "can and should represent massive revenue growth opportunities for retailers."
The Photo2Lab Software Suite offers a complete solution from photo ordering to processing in commercial labs. It includes software applications for Windows, Mac, and Linux, web components, and modules for CD processing or mobile platforms, like iOS and Android devices. The modern connection protocol TRON is freely available and is supported by a variety of third parties. These provide solutions for, among other things, set-top boxes or kiosk terminals. Along with order processing, aspects such as payment, promotion, and adaptation options for affiliates and partners are taken into consideration as part of a white brand solution. The products can be used to handle anything from photo prints to hardcover photo albums, thus offering unique flexibility and openness with the goal of enabling solution customers to reduce costs and reach new target audiences.
In 2010, Photo2Lab installations handled orders with over 220 million digital photos, 500,000 photo albums and photo calendars.
For more information, visit http://www.ecce-terram.com/
About ECCE TERRAM
ECCE TERRAM was founded by Frank Simon in 1996. It has specialized in solutions for e-commerce for the photo industry, lab control, e-payment, and content management. The company's Internet applications are used by well-known companies in the photo industry and beyond. Company headquarters are located in Germany, in the U.S. and New Zealand.