Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Eye-Fi Direct

*Updated Jan. 7th to include Eye-Fi demonstration video. Updated Jan. 9th to include the Engadget preview video at CES.

Eye-Fi, the unique product that allows automatic upload of pictures to the web from their SD memory cards without involving a PC, announced at CES this week that their current line of Eye-Fi X2 cards will support direct photo transfer to other mobile devices for immediate review, editing, and sharing.
Leveraging a combination of new technology in Eye-Fi cards and new Eye-Fi mobile apps, Direct Mode enables consumers to bring together the imaging quality of a digital camera and the connectivity of a smartphone or tablet in an unprecedented way. This innovative solution wirelessly connects the camera to the mobile device to provide a seamless experience between the moment a memory is captured and when consumers want to browse, edit, save and share their memories.
This is noteworthy since Eye-Fi joins a small but growing list of consumer devices that support the recently introduced Wi-Fi Direct certification program by the Wi-Fi Alliance. This new connection method removes the need for a wireless access point to facilitate data transfer between devices, allowing devices to interact directly in a more on-demand fashion for temporary purposes.

This is a smart play by the company to leverage the increasing utilization of "smart" mobile devices by consumers to allow photo enthusiasts to immediately transfer photos from a DSLR or professional camera to a phone, tablet, or other computing device. This means less effort and complexity for photographers in the field. For the professional, this could mean immediate review for correct composition without the time required to change cameras, unpack editing equipment, or potentially miss a great photo opportunity. For consumers use, this can mean immediate upload to social networks without having to wait  until returning home which could be beneficial during travel or vacations.

Here is another video from Engadget showcasing Eye-Fi Direct. It's noteworthy that the Eye-Fi mobile app will run in the background and sync photos automatically while you're shooting. This will make photo distribution, sharing, and publishing even easier while on the go, eliminating the need to manually sync photos.

I expect rapid growth of support for the Wi-Fi Direct program.



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