Instant film, as inventive as it is, has largely been replaced by the digital display. And while you can take dozens of photos in minutes with your phone camera, pick the best one, and instantly share it with your pals online, there’s probably still room in your heart for a real, hold-in-your-hand photograph.
Fujifilm has a new wireless photo-printer to fill the void. The Instax Share SP-2 smartphone printer lets you take a picture with your phone, apply an Instagram-like filter, and print it out. It’s an update on a model Fujifilm released last year; the new version prints faster, outputs at a higher resolution, and makes less noise. It connects to your phone wirelessly and runs on a rechargeable battery.
The SP-2 is actually a mini laser printer, making it able to cough up a good quality photo in less than ten seconds. Photos print on a template with a white border, like the Polaroid did, with space on the top and bottom for adding a date and personal message. Instead of pulling out the Sharpie like you did with your Polaroid (or Impossible) to add a handwritten note to the white border, you can print the message along with the pic. It’s all done in the Instax Share app, which includes a photo editor with Instagram-like filters. The app even lets you print directly from Instagram and Facebook, so if you’re a pro at making your selfie fly with Mark Zuckerberg’s toolkit, you can use that too.
The new Instax Share costs $200–much more expensive than a regular desktop color printer, but a desktop color printer doesn’t weigh less than a pound or fit in your backpack. And unsurprisingly, like all special photo printers, the SP-2 requires expensive blank media. Instax Mini film will cost you $20 for a pack of 20 prints. Good photographers are excellent self-editors; maybe the cost will force you to really only print the best shots.