Artz's ArtFrame Packs a 9.7" ePaper Display, Promises Wholly Wireless Use Across 7,000 Image Changes

Supplied in kit form, the $499 ArtFrame offers 7,000 picture changes — from internal storage or a Wi-Fi network — per charge.

German electronics company Artz has launched a digital photo frame with a twist: The kit form device uses a 9.7" ePaper display for minimum power draw and maximum visibility in bright environments.

"If you don't have enough space in your living room to place all the nice artwork and photos you own or you don't want to stick with the same artwork on your walls for long, then the ArtFrame is for you," Artz explains. "It will cycle through your picture collection in a configurable interval (a recommended interval is 12 or 24 hours)."

The ArtFrame is designed to be used entirely wirelessly: An internal lithium-ion battery provides enough power to drive a claimed 7,000 picture changes on the display, which draws no power unless it's switching between images. There's enough on-board storage for 100 images, or a built-in Wi-Fi radio — configured out-of-the-box using a hotspot and web interface — can be used to pull an unlimited number of images over a network.

There are some disadvantages to Artz's approach, of course. The ePaper display can show only 16 greyscale shades and no color, though its resolution is relatively high at 1200x825 in a 9.7" diagonal. The biggest issue, though, is price: Between the big ePaper display and a custom aluminum frame fitted with anti-glare glass, the ArtFrame comes in at a hefty $499 — considerably above color LCD variants of the same concept.

The ArtFrame is now available on Artz's Tindie store.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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