Last Friday a coworker brought around an Eye-Fi to show it off. After seeing how simple, elegant, and fast it was unfortunately the desire to have one overpowered me and I caved to the pressure. I mean heck, they are only $99 so why not give it a shot, right? Unfortunately when everyone else heard I was buying one and that I had Amazon prime I ended up having to order a handful of them as seen here:
When they arrived yesterday, of course everyone forgot they weren’t all for me and promptly accused me of pulling a “Bonforte” (Jeff Bonforte is a Yahoo VP who is notorious for buying new personal gadgets constantly, and never buying “just one”, but rather several even if the toy was expensive and/or he had no use for more than one). I finally got the chance to play with it tonight and overall have been very happy with the experience. A couple issues I found:
1.) Their installation is in a browser. Since Safari is my default system browser (as any self respecting Mac user would have it set to), the installation attempted to use it. Unfortunately they don’t support Safari and forced me to load a URL in Firefox instead. Thankfully they made it simple to do, but it’s still crappy they can’t make it work in Safari too.
2.) The app attempted to pull in my wifi password from the host OS. Since the machine never has been on a wifi network (heck, it doesn’t even have a wifi card) I am not sure where it got the password it thought would work. After sitting there watching it “attempt to connect” for a while I figured it was clueless, hit cancel, and then typed in the wep key manually. This worked flawlessly as expected and I was able to proceed finishing the setup.
3.) It seems that while you can configure multiple online services to upload to, you can only have one active at a time. Pretty lame if you ask me as I would love the ability to upload to both Flickr and Facebook, not just choose between them (especially since I can only choose online which I want to use). Another issue here is when I removed the Facebook account, it defaulted to selecting “do not share photos online” instead of flipping back to Flickr. The UI made this a bit more confusing since it hid that Flickr was even still configured, but thankfully it didn’t and Flickr still worked fine once I clicked the proper checkbox.
4.) While I can have it add the tag “Eye-Fi” to all photos it uploads, I can’t seem to have it add any other automatic tags. This would be immensely useful to be able to set a default group of tags to use on all photos, so maybe they will hopefully add this in a future update.
I’ve seen a lot of complaints online about it’s lack of ability to choose which photos to upload and other annoyances like that. Personally, that doesn’t bother me in the least because the intent I have for it is to sorta live blog my life. They are not meant to be high quality professional photos, they are meant to capture the moment. Since I am near the same set of wifi APs most of the time (home, work, friends’ houses, etc), the lack of support of public captured portals (aka coffee shop / hotel networks) doesn’t bother me much either. I know that once I get in range of one of my normal networks it will “just work” (assuming my camera is turned on) and my photos will be uploaded automatically. If you want one now too, Amazon.com will gladly take your money I’m sure.
If you are interested in seeing the photos uploaded by my camera, go here:
I will do my best to never delete photos and have it be a running capture of my life. If you decide to do the same, let me know your Flickr account!