Is Hipstamatic's Fake Disposable Camera Idiotic or Brilliant?

Illustration for article titled Is Hipstamatics Fake Disposable Camera Idiotic or Brilliant?

Remember Hipstamatic? That app we all used for fake vintage photo filters before Instagram? They're plotting a comeback, and it hinges on the most ironic, most faux of all faux possible moves: a digital disposable camera for your iPhone. Yeah.

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The forthcoming Hipstamatic D-Series app, Pocket-Lint reports, works just like the regular Hipstamatic camera app—but it won't let you view any of the pics you've snapped on your phone until you've filled an entire 24 shot "roll." Just like the old days! It'll be a free download, plus the cost of extra fake image-altering "lenses," if you're so inclined. So, what's this all about? How much realism do we want in our fake things?

Digital photography has become social photography. Every time we take a picture among friends, everyone immediately crowds around the LCD for some instant vanity gratification. Which is fun. But it completely buries the fun we all used to have when we'd pick up our photos from the developer and tear open the envelope. I don't want to sound like a 24-year-old Andy Rooney, but there was something thrilling about waiting! Instead of the nostalgia for the present given to us by iPhones and point and shooters, the disposable camera was a fun, sentimental, and social experience of a more genuine kind—anticipation! And the unexpected. Both of those have been removed from apps like Instagram, where not only are our photos instantly presented to the world, but altered to fit our notion of what a memory should've been like.

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I think Hipstamatic's got a good idea. Most I've talked to disagree. It's totally gimmicky, sure. But you can download this (free) gimmick and still have all the enjoyment and convenience of regular digital pics—which, don't get me wrong, I love. But is there room for both? Do we miss anything about the way photos used to be, and if so, is it worth playing iOS make believe? [Pocket-Lint via PetaPixel]


You can keep up with Sam Biddle, the author of this post, on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+.

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DISCUSSION

Joeledwards
TacoBandit

Great in theory. Probably a flop in application. The only reason we couldn't see the photos back then is b/c technology of the time didn't allow it. It's not because we actually thought it was fun and cool to wait and see how horrible our family photos turned out. I'd still like to try it out though.

My question is this... Does this mean we'll once again have piles of undeveloped "digital" film waiting to be finished so we can view them years down the road?

My suggestion to the app would be that it creates a new "digital film roll" in the camera every month regardless if the current roll is full or not. Users must go into the app and place unfinished rolls back into the camera in order to finish the 24 pictures before they can view them. It would create a little bit more curiosity as to what's on each roll and make the mixed photo experience a lot more like it was back in the day.