Rochester, N.Y.-based Eastman Kodak Co. Tuesday fired another salvo in the
escalating battle over the digital imaging space when it allied with
Milpitas, Calif.-based LSI Logic Corp. in an effort to make digital
photographs easier to display by bringing them to the television set.
While Kodak focuses on display technologies and online print fulfillment,
Polaroid — shaping up to be Kodak’s major rival in the space — has taken
another tack. It is attempting to corner the market on specialized print
media for home-based and kiosk-based printing of digital photographs.
Meanwhile, a number of online photo albums (including Kodak’s own Ofoto Web site) continue to lure consumers seeking photo-sharing capabilities. For example, dotPhoto, Inc. of Ewing, NJ, on Tuesday announced unlimited digital storage for one year and 60 free prints for new members.
But the Kodak/LSI deal is the first chance for widespread sharing of digital photos without the use of a PC. LSI recently acquired C-Cube Microsystems, a provider of integrated processors for the DVD market. Under the alliance, LSI will integrate its
DVD system processor technology with Kodak’s service infrastructure and brand, allowing owners of LSI-based DVD players the ability to view digital photos from a Kodak Picture CD on their television sets, without ever having to use a computer. LSI’s DVD players and devices will carry the “Kodak Picture CD Compatibility Mark,” as part of the deal.
“This technology is a key step toward bringing digital photography services
to the family room, where most people want to view their pictures,” said Dan
Palumbo, president Consumer Imaging and senior vice president, Kodak. “The
combination of Kodak’s comprehensive digital imaging products and services,
and LSI Logic’s integrated digital video solutions promises to expand the
benefits of digital photography and services and broaden Kodak’s reach to
the consumer electronic market.”
The LSI-based DVD players will feature:
- Automatic picture scaling to best fit maximum TV display size
- Slide show
- Thumbnail/catalog display in one screen for quick browsing
- Image rotation
- Progressive scan display support.
The deal also extends to LSI Logic’s OEM partners, who will be able to
distribute DVD players marked with the Kodak Picture CD Compatible logo.
“We are pleased to be working with Kodak to develop and market this
capability for consumers who are excited about digital imaging,” said
Timothy Vehling, director of Consumer Products Marketing at LSI. “As the
number one supplier of DVD ICs worldwide, LSI Logic’s product and market
leadership in consumer digital products will shift still image viewing from
the PC and allow people to share and enjoy their pictures in the living room
and across the Internet.”