Flickr on my photo frame Part 2

Everything was going so well.  I could view a sequence of my photos from flickr and from my friends on Facebook interspersed with National Geographic photos, the Weather and Clock/ Calendar – see my earlier blog. Then Framehannel withdrew from the market and not only Framechannel but Frameit.livecom as well.

So all of a sudden I was left with whatever Kodak had to offer.  OK so they have a site at which I could store my photos and view them on my photo frame, but who uses Kodak’s site for storing and displaying their photos. Friends could still email my photo frame directly but none could be bothered. I had to resort to viewing my photos stored on my NAS drive my LaCie LaCinema – see my blog item My multi-room media shifting set-up

Thus began my search for another cloud service or suitable wifi photoframe.  Toshiba, Kodak and Samsung all had photo frames which could use the now defunct Framechannel. So what’s left:

  • Kodak Pulse and Sony W frames use Facebook
  • Samsung frames use Windows Live & RSS feed

But no-one was offering Flickr

MeeChannel with MeeFrame

Meeframe

However I have discovered another service that although not directly similar to Framechannel would allow me to access a whole load of my social network content on a photo frame.  That service is Meechannel.com It’s a Dutch service (use Google Translate in Google Chrome to read it) and is in Beta, but looks very promising.

It gathers together all your Photo, Video, RSS streams and makes them accessible from one stream.  What’s more is that they even have a photo frame the Looqs MeeFrame specifically to stream content from MeeChannel. It can be bought in the UK from Langton Info Services

So with this service I could stream my Flickr (or Picasa) photos, the weather and clock/ calendar but not photos from my Facebook or my friends’ Facebook.

Meeframe-setup

Top Ten Reviews of WiFi photo frames for 2012 puts the Kodak Pulse at No3 and Meeframe at No 4

What about a Tablet

What I would prefer is to be able to access MeeChannel from my Kodak Easyshare photo frame.  It would seem a shame to have to buy another one.

Would you want to spend about £200 on a touch screen photo frame when there rumours that there could soon be a cheap Android tablet on the market. I could  then use the tablet  as a photo frame when not using it for surfing the web and accessing my emails and social networks.  I would need an app that could run a stream of photos.

Note

Note that this blog is UK based so the content is directed at services that are accessible from UK or products that can be bought in the UK. There are other photo frames that can access Flickr but they are not available in the UK.  The comparison site Top Ten Reviews puts Ceiva Share and Pix-Star FotoConnect at No1 and No 2. Both can access Facebook, Flickr and Picasa but neither can be bought in the UK.

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My Flickr Photos on my WiFi Photo Frame

I really enjoy devices that use my home wireless LAN and Internet gateway .

Not so long ago I bought a WiFi Radio which receives internet radio, podcasts and music from my PC media server. All our household mobile phones have WiFi and can therefore access the internet and Skype and, depending on the software, media from home PC. My TV can also access by home LAN and the internet.

Now I have acquired a WiFi photoframe a Kodak W1020 which can take feeds from the Internet, from my home LAN or from its own internal storage.

Like my WiFi radio (see my earlier blog Internet Radio) you need to link your device, wifi radio or wifi photoframe, to an online service. This is usually done by registering your devices ID with the online service . My Revo Blik Radio Station uses Frontier Silicon Radio Portal . My Kodak W1020 wifi photoframe can take feeds from FrameChannel wireless frame portal or from Kodak’s own portal.  FrameChannel can also feed photo frames from other manufacturers.

I prefer FrameChannel because it gives me access to my own Flickr photos. FrameChannel also provides access to a number of online photo services including its own. You can choose from

 

   Framechannel photos Photobucket
   My Friends Photos Windows Live Photos
   Flickr .mac web galleries
   Facebook photos Webshots
   Picasa any RSS photo feed

My Friends Photos is an interesting one as its basically an email address to which your friends and family can send photos, or messages as pictures,  which will then appear on your photo frame.

I use Flickr for my photos and this service allows you filter your flickr photos by tags. And of course you can regularly change your tags to show an alternative set of your photos.

In addition you can select from a range of other services such as news, sports and weather. I have chosen:

  • National Geographic – Shorelines & Islands
  • Reuters UK Domestic News  (or choose your own RSS feeds)
  • Frame Media Calendar
  • Three Day Weather Forecast

All these ‘channels’ appear intermingled on your connected photoframe.  You can also set the duration by channel and the time of day by channel.

Other Features

The Kodak frames also have a really good way of configuring the frame through touch strips down the right hand side and along the bottom.  I like this approach as the screen does get covered in greasing finger prints.

In the evening I sometimes sit down to watch the picture frame rather that the TV.  Which reminds me this Kodak frame can also show videos but at the moment only those from its internal memory or off the home LAN and you can accompany your pictures with music.

As with most frames you can plug your camera into the frame and use the frame as a large viewer for the pictures in your camera (stills or movies).

More to come

What is coming along though are TVs with internet access through widgets loaded directly into you TV. More fun gadgets to play with and blog about.

I am also investigating a Freeview box with wifi called FetchTV which, unlike BT Vision or TiscaliTV, does not require a subscription.

Update April 2012

Please note that Framechannel has now closed. To see the consequences of this and what alternative are now available see “Flickr on my photo frame Pt2”