For Christmas, intrigued by the concept of it, we decided to buy a Polaroid PoGo Printer for the family to use. We hadn’t really heard of it before, nor did we really know exactly what it did, but it was on sale on Black Friday and many of the members of our family are fanatical about printing out photos, so we decided to give it a shot.
I have to admit, it’s not really what we expected, but it is a neat little niche product.
What it Does
The PoGo printer is a small device, about the size of a billfold wallet. It prints photos on special Polaroid paper without using any ink. There is no ink in the printer to replace; you simply replace the paper. That makes it extremely easy to take with you wherever you go (especially if you wear cargo pants).
You can print from a PictBridge camera or a Bluetooth-enabled device. It prints 2″x3″ photos on sticky-backed paper, so you can actually peel the backs off and stick the photos anywhere you want.
What It Doesn’t Do
This printer does not have a screen; which means there are no settings you can adjust. It also does not have a memory card reader (since it has no screen, that would ultimately be kind of pointless). Therefore, the only way to print photos is to plug your camera (again, it has to be a PictBridge-capable camera) in with the USB cable that goes with your camera. Or, you can send photos to the printer from a Bluetooth-enabled device (phone or computer).
A note about the Bluetooth functionality: My wife’s Blackberry connected to the printer just fine and was able to print a photo, but my HTC Surround indicated it was not able to connect to the printer. I also figured out that the Bluetooth functionality will not work if there is a USB cable plugged into the printer.
This printer also does not print anything but 2″x3″ photos. Although the box in which the refill paper is packaged appears to be much larger than that, it really is only 2″x3″ (about wallet size). That’s the only size paper that’s available, and that’s the only size the printer is capable of handling.
Since the photos are so small, the printer most likely would not make a viable replacement for another photo printer. However, I think this printer could have a very cool niche market, especially among teenagers (if my own teenagers are any indication as to what teenagers like). It’s portable; it’s easy to use (again, there are no settings) and it’s pretty fast. The fact that the photos are actually stickers makes it kind of neat, too. Imagine snapping a few photos with your camera phone while in school, then printing them out and sticking them to your binders, book covers or even your locker.
I think the device itself if priced fairly well for that niche market, as well. According to the Polaroid website, the standard price for the printer is $39.99. The paper, however (remember, though, that the paper and the printer are the only two things you ever need – other than a device with digital photos on it – to make this printer work; so you never have to spend money on ink), is priced at $9.99 for a pack of 30 pieces of paper.
Again, if you’re looking for a way to avoid running out to WalMart or Target or some other box store every time you want to print nice copies of your digital photos, I don’t think the PoGo printer is really what you want. Instead, you should invest in a decent inkjet photo printer (look at the prices of ink before buying one, though, as the ink usually costs more to replace than the printer itself).
However, if you constantly find yourself in a situation where you snap neat, throwaway photos and you want to print a copy to share immediately, the PoGo printer is a neat little thing to have around.
Disclosure: I am, in no way, affiliated with anyone related to Polaroid, nor have I received any compensation (though I wouldn’t be totally averse to the idea :)) from any entity related to the products mentioned in this article. I am simply a consumer that happened to buy this product for Christmas.