CES 2010: Lunch @ Piero’s

EyeFi is a wireless memory card. It’s an SD card with an embedded 802.11 wireless card. When the user takes a picture or video and moves within range of a configured wireless network, the camera will upload the picture or video to a computer of the user’s pre-determined choice, or upload them to a variety of photo or video sharing sites, such as Flickr or YouTube. The key here is that it’s not necessary for a computer to be involved; a wireless network connection is all which is needed for pictures to find their way to the Internet.

CES 2010: Lunch @ Piero's CES 2010: Lunch @ Piero's

Newer radios in the cards extend the effective range up to 45′. The top-of-the-line card doesn’t even need a wireless access point: it can send pictures to a laptop via an ad-hoc network if no access point is found. That card can also handle RAW images and a feature called “endless memory,” wherein pictures are removed from the card once uploaded, so that the user can effectively never run out of space on the card as long as a wireless connection exists.

I see great applications for this. Folks at conventions and trade shows—such as CES—could take pictures and the pictures could be instantaneously available on the Internet because of the pervasiveness of wireless access or via a conveniently configured mobile phone sharing its 3G via ad-hoc wireless.

The cheapest EyeFi device is $49 for 2 GB, and the hotrod version, 8 GB with ad-hoc wireless and more, is $149. It’s almost worth it, and when the price comes down, it most certainly will be worth it, especially for the shutterbugs among us.

I know mobile phone applications are not ThinkComputers’ normal fare, but hang tight, reader, this is just too cool to pass up.

FizWoz is a mobile phone application which permits users to upload pictures to an auction site where bidders can acquire or license images. In essence, it’s crowdsourcing the paparazzi, and FizWoz founder Andy Sheldon isn’t afraid to admit it.

FizWoz splits the final cost with the photographer, taking 40% and leaving the photog with 60%. It’s not the greatest deal, but when a since highly incriminating picture of that popular celebrity could be worth several thousand dollars, amateur photographers equipped with cameraphones have little to lose.

CES 2010: Lunch @ Piero's CES 2010: Lunch @ Piero's CES 2010: Lunch @ Piero's

Additionally, through FizWoz, bloggers can license photos for use on their blog. The company regulates and requires proper attribution for all licensed and purchased images. On top of that, FizWoz will share ad revenue with bloggers who use FizWoz images!

FizWoz isn’t just standing by and hoping that users will discover and contribute, earning some cash along the way. No, no. FizWoz will be bundled on the Nokia N900 because Nokia felt that this application has so much potential that it could actually pay for the phone itself! How cool would it be to buy a new mobile phone, then, the next night, be out and about with friends, witness some newsworthy event, and recoup the cost of the phone and then some because of the picture you shot with your phone and uploaded to FizWoz?

FizWoz is available now on just about every mobile platform except Android. It’s being considered, though, and no release date has been announced. We G1 and Nexus One owners eagerly await it.

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