Obituary: photo sharing services

A long list of discontinued services. Some could last a few quarters, some a few years. Many could be added to the list.

Lesson learnt: invest wisely your time, photo sharing services come and go for many of them. We can’t assess all risks, who knows whether a company will be sold to another one? But at least, let’s invest our time and share our photos with products we believe in. If they have no competitive advantage, they won’t last. If they have, they may.

A non exhaustive list:

Google+: Google announced it will close the service before end of 2019. The service has failed to become mainstream and the leak which happened in 2018 has made it a liability to Google.

Snapjoy LogoSnapjoy: well implemented, but no real innovation. Acquired by Dropbox in 2012. It is interesting to note that Dropbox committed to keep the services and finally shot it down just a few quarters later.

Pixable: Facebook best friends… It really provided a great experience coupled with Facebook likes and comments on your pictures and those of your friends. It also connected you with other public pictures. But it has been closing up in 2015. One more added to the list…

DQR_400x800DarqRoom: French centric, high quality services. Added value mostly from printed services. Services closed in 2013 after 5 years of operations.

PanoramioPanoramio: integrated into Google services and discontinued as a product. Too bad for you if you were using your panoramio account, you have lost your images!

Kodak Gallery: another victim in 2012, when Kodak Gallery was a photosharing zombie. Its ends was inevitable. The users photos were supposed to be migrated to Shutterfly, with some limitations tough.

Lightbox: a mobile app, somewhat similar to other Instagram. The team has been hired by Facebook in 2012, and shut down the services a few weeks later. Too bad for the users, their career was more important than your pictures.

Picplz: another victim of Facebook. 2012 photo sharing massive investments of the giant have not motivated entrepreneurs to continue spending money on such services. Picplz was fine, but not really different from other mobile photo sharing.

ZangZing, which tried to masquerade Google+ Photos, was actually quite good as they were focusing at privately sharing photos. I have written I was concerned by the long term viability of the service, they eventually had to close their doors a few months later, in 2012 too. This year has not only been the one of Facebook’s infamous IPO, it has also been a tough one for photo sharing services!

Color: some good ideas (curation by geolocalization), generous funds (over $ 40 millions), but no success for different reasons. My two cents: just another photo sharing website and a good idea is not enough.