PhotoRocket is one of 53 companies chosen by VentureBeat to launch at the DEMO Spring 2011 event taking place this week in Palm Desert, Calif. After our selection, the companies pay a fee to present. Our coverage of them remains objective.
Everybody sends and receives digital photos; it’s a part of our lives. Now a startup called PhotoRocket has come up with a way to make photo sharing simpler than before.
After a year of development, PhotoRocket is unveiling a new service at today’s DEMO conference in Palm Desert, Calif., that eliminates the need to attach and upload photos, making them easier to share via email, which is where the vast majority of photo sharing takes place, according to founder Scott Lipsky. PhotoRocket also lets users send images across social networks, and other popular applications.
From a computer or mobile device, a user simply clicks on a photo, selects recipients, selects social networking sites and other photo destinations such as Flickr to post to, and then presses share. Recipients receive an email notification that the photos have been sent.
Although the photo sharing space is crowded, PhotoRocket is not another photo sharing site; it’s a utility — in contrast to popular sites such as Flickr and Shutterfly and mobile photo applications such as Instagram. The goal of PhotoRocket is not to become a community site or a place to post albums but to make it as easy to share photos as it is to send text messages.
The company will face the challenge of educating a market that may not understand how it’s different and who may see the service as just another photo site.
The company hopes to make money by getting users to purchase of prints and gifts, although it is also considering an advertisement and subscription model in the future.
PhotoRocket, which was founded in 2009, is based in Seattle. The company was founded by Lipsky, who was co-founder and CTO of aQuantive, which was acquired by Microsoft in 2007 for over $6 billion. PhotoRocket raised $1.3 million in 2010 from members of the PhotoRocket management team, Denny Hill Capital, and a number of Seattle-based angels.