Posts filed under zoomin

Is there room for another photo site?

Written by: Madhur

On Sep 16th, 2007

A new photo printing site called ZoomIn was launched last week. Sunny Balijepalli, the fabled co-founder of Half.com (which was sold to eBay for $350 million in 2000) is the CEO and co-founder of the company. I for one am surprised that people still see an opportunity in the crowded online photo printing space. From their pitch and from the site, I fail to see what is it that will make users switch from one of the existing sites. They claim to have a “Flickr meets Shutterfly” model, which is basically good photo sharing features accompanied by printing service. Sounds good, but then iTasveer and PicSquare already have Flickr/Picasa integration, by which users can logon to their Flickr/Picasa accounts and print photos from there. Another feature ZoomIn boasts of is the US delivery (since they have launched in US and India simultaneously) which again is already possible if the users adopt Flickr + an Indian site. Finally, ZoomIn also plans to introduce mobile upload and ordering features. This feature can certainly prove to be a key differentiator when actually launched, given the fact that mobile usage volume is orders of magnitude more compared to Internet in India. It will be interesting to see which other existing players roll out mobile features to fight off the competition (Its one of the features I am waiting to see for some time now).

My conclusion is that as of right now its hard to see what value the new site is adding in terms of user experience. Of course at this point it becomes the game of who can do a better job of marketing, acquiring new customers at low cost (ZoomIn is talking about leveraging social networks) and extracting higher margins. I personally would not like to play this game, but hey - competition among players and more choices for users is always great!

Invite your thoughts.

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