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Raise your hand if you think digital photo frames are small, clunky, difficult to use and expensive. Yeah, you're probably thinking of early-day models like the Ceiva, which were small, clunky, difficult to use and expensive. Indeed, if you ever tried a first- or even second-generation frame, I wouldn't blame you for hating them.
Good news: They've improved significantly, to the point where they're now among my favorite products. Because think about it: You probably have hundreds — even thousands — of photos collected in albums and on your phone. But when do you actually get to see them? Only when you actually take the time to browse.
With a digital frame, your favorite pix are on display all the time, running in a continuous slideshow. You can easily add more, and friends and family can do likewise. Why settle for a frame that shows just one measly photo when you can have one that shows thousands?
There are lots of these out there; the best bang for the buck right now is the PhotoSpring 10-inch WiFi Digital Picture Frame, which is currently on sale for $119. It's regularly $159; this is the lowest price ever.
I've tried a lot of these frames over the years, and the PhotoSpring ticks all the important boxes. The 10-inch screen is a decent size (think: iPad), and it's a touchscreen, which makes it easier to browse your collection, modify settings and so on.
You can position it in portrait or landscape mode; a cleverly designed bendable stand lets you adjust the tilt to your liking. There's also a wall-mount option, though keep in mind you'll have a power cord running down your wall unless you get creative. (Consider something like this $15 raceway kit, which can help.)
Here's the best part: You can add photos to the frame using any combination of the PhotoSpring app, a dedicated e-mail address and a Web browser. So, for example, if you want to invite friends and family to send new pictures, just give them the frame's e-mail address.
Another perk: You can watch videos as well, complete with sound. (There's even an audio-out jack if you want to connect a bigger, louder speaker.) The frame can play clips up to five minutes in length. Whether you'd want those to be part of your regular slideshow, that's for you to decide. But it's nice to have the option.
All this happens without any kind of subscription or fee; once you buy the frame, that's it, you're done. Otherwise, trust me, you would not be seeing a 4.7-star average rating from over 600 Amazon buyers.
I'd give it roughly the same rating; my only complaint is that both the USB port and SD slot on the back are disabled, meaning you can't add photos that way. (Ironically, those were the only ways to add them on early-generation frames.) It's hardly a deal-breaker, but disappointing all the same.
That gripe aside, the PhotoSpring frame is a winner — and I'm definitely liking it at this price.
What do you think? Share your photo feelings in the comments section below!