The other day I took a look at the Kodak Z915 digital camera, now digital cameras are great products in that you get to see the pictures instantly, but they’re still not quite as nice as having a photograph in your hand. With digital photos if you want to display them you’ve normally got to print them out, and if you want good pictures, you’ll need to invest in a good photo printer. There is another option though, getting a digital photo frame, these allow you to display your pictures for all to see, without the need to print them, and you can display many, many pictures without taking up a lot of space.
Today I’m taking a look at the Sungale ID800WT 8″ Wi-Fi Digital Touchscreen Photo Frame, as the name suggests it has Wi-Fi built into it and it features a touchscreen. Back in March I looked at the Kodak W1020 Digital Photo Frame and it also had both of these features to an extent, the Kodak frame only had a touch border, not the entire screen, the Sungale I have today though has the entire screen enabled for touch which makes navigation and operation much easier.
First up I’ve got the video unboxing for you, and some still pictures to follow:
Youtube: Top ten Youtube programs for your entertainment
RSS news: Google &Yahoo
IP Radio: Thousands of stations for your selection
Picasa: View and download your photos
Stock: Real-time stock quotes and market news
Gmail: Watch your email without a PC
Weather: Real time weather report in your area
Music: WMA / MP3 Convertible
Photo: JPG, TIF, PNG, BMP
Calendar: Digital Calendar
Clock: Analogue Clock display
Touch Screen: Touch screen to do your operation
* Auto link to your home wireless router,
* auto configuration View and download your photos on internet
* Listen thousands of IP Radio stations on the global
* Input Zip code to find real time weather report in your area
* RSS to view your favorite and personal YouTube
* Real time stock quotes and market news
* Top ten YouTube programs for your entertainment
* Display Google news and Yahoo news
* Gmail watchable
* Touch screen make you enjoy your operation
* Digital Calendar
* analogue clock display
* USB Slave for PC to manage your files
* 8” hi-resolution LCD screen/Slide show/video/music
Display type: TFT LCD
Screen dimension: 8 inch (4:3)
Contrast: 250 cd/m2
Photo file formats: JPG, TIF, PNG, BMP
Music file formats: WMA / MP3 Convertable
Video file formats: AVI
USB connection: USB Host and USB device?
Power supply: AC 100—-240V DC 5V 2A
Using the Sungale photo frame is easy, you can transfer pictures via the USB cable or you can view them from an external storage device like a USB drive.
The Sungale though is much more than a picture frame, it’s internet enabled so you can check the news, stocks, weather, email, listen to internet radio, watch YouTube and view your pictures on Picasa. It also features a calendar, with clock so you can display the time and date as well.
The main interface shows all of the icons that you can access, just tap them and they open up, the touchscreen is actually very sensitive once you get accustomed to it.
Here’s a video tour of the interface and functions:
The internet connections works, but it’s a bit slow, I really didn’t have any problems connecting to my router, took two tries, for some reason the first time didn’t work, but after the second try it worked every time with no problems.
Here’s pictures of each option:
The Sungale digital photo frame is obviously much more than just for pictures, pictures is really a secondary thing. Looking at actual pictures with the Sungale can take time as you saw in the video unless you use the slideshow mode, there’s a long pause while the frame decodes the picture for you.
As I mentioned in the video, the Sungale can be used to view videos, but it’s not something it does well, only one video format is supported and video is very choppy.
Yes the Sungale does do a lot of stuff, and it even shows your pictures, which it does well actually. The included other stuff is useful I guess, but I have to question why there’s an option to check stocks? I mean, something like this is aimed at people to use in there home etc, not sure how many people out there have stocks to check, they could have done without that and used the resources to improve something else.
The YouTube option is nice I guess, but the videos are small, and you’re limited to the top videos, it’s more of a novelty than anything I think.
Checking email is a nice feature to have I guess, but again I have to ask why? I know I’m not going to be using a picture frame to check my email, though that’s just me.
The internet radio is a nice feature and it works well, the built in speakers are decent, nothing special, but they work.
The news option is useful, but here again I have to ask why? If it showed you pictures to go with the article it might be nicer, and the Sungale photo frame doesn’t seem to be able to handle the HTML correctly, so you see the code in some of the news that you’ll be reading, why include the feature if it’s not finished?
The overall design is questionable as well, I personally do not like the overly large frame, it seems to me that they made the frame large to give the impression of a larger screen, or larger product.
Bottom line is that the Sungale Digital Photo frame does a lot of things, but doesn’t really do them well, it seems as though they just have too much going on, too much stuff in there. yes, the main function is pictures, and it does them well for the most part. Since it’s only 800×600 resolution, don’t expect HD quality photos and you can see pixels in the photos and the interface as well, along with the other parts of the frame.
The Sungale ID800WT is an example of a product that tries to do too much, and really doesn’t do any one thing very well. The idea behind it is sound, and I can understand how they would want to add more functionality to the product to make it more attractive to buyers, but being able to do more stuff is not always a good thing.
Having the ability to play movies or videos is nice, but if you’re going to include it, at least be able to play more than one format, and make it the more popular ones.
As a photo frame, it’s not a bad product, yes it displays your photos, and they look decent, and I guess the other features might be useful to some people out there.
The interface itself is nice, the touchscreen works well most of the time.
+Easy to use
+Touchscreen is sensitive
+Nice looking pictures
-Limited video formats
-Low resolution screen, not very crisp and clear
-Small screen, seems to be mostly frame to make it look bigger
-Doesn’t do HTML well