Last week, HP Inc. added two new Sprocket mobile printers that expand on its original Sprocket mobile printer introduced in September, and which has proved popular among millennials, according to an HP spokesperson. HP also introduced a new third member of the Sprocket family, the Sprocket Plus.
Headlining the announcement is the HP Sprocket 2-in-1 ($159.99 MSRP), the newest evolution in the Sprocket line-up. It combines a pocket-sized photo printer with a built-in instant camera, and is designed for consumer use for capturing and printing on the spot, particularly at social events.
Anneliese Olson, general manager and global head of Home Printing Solutions at HP, explained: “Our research tells us that teens and young adults love stylish gadgets that enhance social events by contributing a fun, new element and bringing people closer together.”
The Sprocket 2-in-1 made its debut at the Vogue’s Forces of Fashion event in New York City last week.
The 2-in-1 is small and light enough to fit in a purse or pocket, and produces 2″ x 3” “stick-able” snapshots or social media photos in less than a minute.
HP also announced the Sprocket Plus, which prints 30-percent larger photos than either the original Sprocket or the Sprocket 2-in-1. It’s also said to have as the thinnest design ever for a Sprocket, and on the market today.
The free to download, HP Sprocket App for iOS and Android enables users to print their photos with simple two-tap process: select a photo and print a photo. Users can personalize photos with frames, emojis, text, stickers, filters, and more. The can connect their social media accounts to the HP Sprocket App and instantly turn any of those photos into colorful prints. The HP Sprocket App continues also features like a photobooth mode and tile print, and users can also incorporate their own hand-drawn stickers into the app.
With last week’s announcements, and across the entire Sprocket product family, HP has also updated the mobile experience to incorporate augmented reality technology (AR) in ways that it says “help everyone tell deeper stories that bring to life Sprocket prints.” With the “Relive Memories” feature, users can scan a photo via the Sprocket app and it automatically attaches to a video, a phone or social-media feed related to that photo—that plays in AR on the photo. To help share a richer story, the user swipes once to instantly see all the photos from that location or date, then swipes again to unlock content about the locale.
Sprocket portable printers produce prints using ZINK Zero Ink Technology. They doesn’t use inkjet printing and ink cartridges, but instead uses ZINK Zero Ink technology, and require ZINK photo paper for printing border-less 2″ x 3″ (5 x 7.6 cm) color photos. The special ZINK paper contains embedded crystals that, when heated up by the printer, create color images. When connected to a smartphone or tablet via the HP Sprocket app, they can print photos from the smartphone’s camera roll, as well as photos from accounts at Facebook, Instagram, and Flickr.
Unlike similar product offerings that simply print photos, the Sprocket can use Bluetooth to first send the photo to your smartphone for augmentation or editing before it’s printed using the free HP Sprocket App. The app allows users to add and customize fonts, borders, and text boxes to photos, which means all the color required for printing is embedded in the HP photo paper itself, and prints are said to be sticky-backed, smudge-proof, and water- and tear-resistant.
HP is also offering an expanded portfolio of colors with premium designs, as well as a suite of accessories for the Sprocket lineup, from sleeves and wallets, to decorations to showcase photo creations, to albums and journals to commemorate special events.
The Sprocket 2-in-1 is available now, while the Sprocket Plus will be available in late November.
To learn more about the expanded HP Sprocket family, visit HP here.