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Sprocket printer for mobile phones

Does anyone have experience with the Sprocket printer for mobile phones?
There are reviews online that vary widely from 5 Star love it to 1star huge disappointment. The bulk of these are a yeAr or more old. A. next generation option has become available.
Would I be wasting money to get one.

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Welcome to the community

Looking at the price of the printer and consumables, it looks an expensive way to print photos. If one has ready access to 10c photo prints at places like Officeworks, Kmart, Harvey Norman etc, then a sprocket printer may not be a good financial investment.

Even looking at the capital cost of the printer, one would need to print over a 1000 photos to be even with the 10c photo option. Add in printer consumables, and it will never be cheaper. Convenience costs dearly, and this is another example.

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Welcome to the forum.

I don’t have any info on the Sprocket, but I have looked at the cost of mobile photo printers in the past. It is a very very expensive way to print photos.

I found one review of the Sprocket from 2016 by the Verge. The most telling comment was “The $130 instant printer is more of a toy than anything else”.

As an indication of consumable costs, photo paper from Officeworks is $28 for 50 2"x3" prints, so you are looking at 56c per very small print.

As an alternative, if you have a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth capable printer at home and you want to print straight off your phone, you can connect to the printer and print photos. I also think that some printers will allow phones to be connected via USB cable to print photos though I have never tried that. What I do is back up my photos onto the computer and print what I want from there.

Remember that if you would only ever be able to print in that small 2"x3" format with the Sprocket, and never be able to print up to the A4 size desktop printers would allow.

In short, I think you would be wasting your money buying this or similar printer.

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@Queenz Welcome to the Community

I looked at them again recently but still found the consumables costly for the end result and the size of the pictures it produces are way too small in my opinion. An expensive novelty for children is my take on it.

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“a very expensive convenience with its sole purpose from the vendors perspective to sell ink/consumables” is how I would summarise it.

Is there a reason why in the breakup of Hewlett-Packard, the ink company - ahem, sorry the PC and printer company is called “HP Inc” (sic) ?? :wink: It was long joked inside HP that it was an ink company ‘that also sold other stuff, including computers …’ but when the figures came out on a regular basis it didn’t seem that much of a joke, although still just as ‘funny’.

… “what they said” (@phb @meltam @grahroll) …

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I bought one from Officeworks a couple of weeks ago and have used it several times. I bought it for journaling so I can add small pics to my ramblings. It serves that purpose well. The pics are small and they have a peel off backing that stays stuck on paper. I’ve also used the pics for the back of my phone
The downside is the color of the pics. Definitely quite dull and not true to life. Also the size is tiny! A bit smaller than credit card size.
It really depends on your purpose.
I don’t regret my purchase. It’s fun to use and fits in my handbag. Very light to carry and keeps its charge. My teenager loves it.

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Hi @amspsych and welcome to the community.

As you note, there is a certain appeal and usefulness of the Sprocket printer. It seems very much alike to the early days of the colour Polaroid Instamatic Camera. Way back when work had one, the manager was the proud keeper. The cost of a small pack of the squarish prints (6 or 8 I don’t quite remember) was more that the cost of a roll of colour film and developing with prints! Nor was the quality of the print close to equal. The Polaroid prints did serve a need. Just not one the average consumer could justify.

The Sprocket likewise has a niche?

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Yes I’d agree. It’s definitely a niche market. I’m surprised they don’t actually target it towards the journaling market. It’s also fun for holidays and for teenagers who can carry it in their school bag… more convenient than carrying an Instamatic camera which was very trendy a few years ago. Not surprisingly, convenience comes at a cost. All “toys” are expensive and generally have a short shelf life. Cheers.

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Sounds like a great way to describe the product for that market.

Our teenagers found the expense of a basic mobile phone enough of a challenge. That’s despite having part time jobs to fund their life styles. Perhaps a toy more for the late teens or thereafter when money may be in greater supply than common sense?

Ours found the photo booths so common in Japan equally addictive. Nothing surprises.

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This is my intended purpose too. You have raised the issues that most other journal users mention, namely that the colours are not great. I was not expecting perfection along with the convenience. Thanks for your first hand experience report, it is helpful for my decision making.

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