Print Photos Easily Everywhere! Takara Tomy's Printoss Smartphone Instax Photo Printer Review
A handy pocket printer which allows you to print photos anywhere!
Ever thought of building a time machine? Would it need batteries, applications or a connection? No? Neither does Takara Tomy's Printoss—a no-battery, no-apps, no-connection-needed smartphone instant photo printer. Yes, proper time travel's a bit far-fetched in our lifetime but think: printing all the golden memories you can travel back to; all frozen in time. Too good to be true? Read on!
While Takara Tomy's specialty is in children's toys, you can look at the Printoss through two different lenses—a useful toy or a photo printer. The child in me prefers the former. The Printoss does need a little setting up, but it's pretty foolproof; so anyone can operate this little gadget. The printer comes in three colours — Sakura (Pink), Sora (Blue) and Sumi (Black). When it first launched in Japan, it was so sought-after that it was frequently sold out in stores!
No-battery, no-app, no connection? How does the Printoss Smartphone Instax Photo Printer work?
The short story — it captures a picture of the image displayed on your phone.
The long story — the Printoss is a printer and scanner combined. I tested the Printoss with a Huawei Mate 20 Pro and an iPhone X! Any phone that can be placed above the device can be used to print your desired photo. While it's a huge pro that it doesn't require batteries or power supply, it does require some knuckle grease to unload each film by turning the print dial on the device after every shot—something I would gladly overlook.
What’s included in the box?
The Printoss only comes with the device and a manual; it does not include films. Thankfully, it uses a standard film size: 3.4 x 2.1-inch prints, which is conveniently the size of the widely available Fujifilm Instax Mini Film. This makes it so much easier to fall in love with the Printoss. I can't imagine having to hunt down specific films from a particular brand that is only stocked in a tiny camera shop in ulu Singapore. Granted, the photo quality is not the best, but that's to be expected with films coupled with the fact that the Printoss takes a photo of the image on your phone.
Setting up Printoss
It does take very minor setting up but once you’ve figured it out, it's easy peasy lemon squeezy.
1. Fully open the wings on your Printoss and slide the white frame from the central cover (the lens will pop out).
2. To prepare for printing, optimise the settings on your phone:
- Increase phone brightness to 100%;
- Turn off auto-lock;
- Lock the screen orientation; and
- Turn on Airplane mode to prevent interruptions.
3. Place the white frame on your phone and then place it on top of the Printoss making sure to align the double and single lugs on the frame and the Printoss wings.
4. Use the reflective mirror to ensure your photo is aligned and that the screen is still on.
5. When you're ready, press the shutter button fully before releasing it.
6. After releasing the shutter, continually turn the print dial in a clockwise direction until the film is released.
Assuming you haven’t kept and tucked away the Printoss, simply repeat steps 3 to 6 to print another photo!
What I Love About The Printoss
Needless to say, Printoss is the baby of technology, kawaii and retro fun. It’s difficult to not like it. The one thing that stuck out most to me about the Printoss? It's an aggressively low price point! Ranging from $46 to $69, it's really a steal for a photo printer in this day and age, and a cute one at that.
The Printoss would be incredibly useful for those who enjoy having a physical keepsake of a special day, or a special someone, or simply, a selfie. It might look a little bulky but it weighs only 350 grams, which makes it easy to carry around. I would absolutely bring it to a birthday dinner or a small gathering where we can take turns printing our favorite snaps of the night. It's the perfect gift for those who love journaling, scrapbooking or if you just love having printed photos!
All in all, I really enjoyed testing out the Printoss! So much that I’d consider selling off my Instax Printer SP-2 for this!
Reviews of other cool and interesting gadgets in Singapore?