Quick Pitch: PostalPix is an iPhone app that lets you order prints of your iPhone photos in a variety of formats.
Genius Idea: After Isaac and Christina Lay had a baby boy, the couple started snapping photos of their new bundle of joy with their iPhones. They soon realized there was no simple way to get those photos off their phones and into the hands of friends and family. Shortly thereafter, Isaac Lay co-founded PostalPix, a service for ordering prints of mobile photos.
PostalPix is as straightforward as it sounds. iPhone owners can use the app to order 4 x 6 and 8 x 10 prints and mouse pads of photos pulled from their phone’s library. It’s as simple as selecting print size, picking photos, specifying quantity and paying for the prints.Prices appear to be reasonable — a pack of three 4″ x 6″ prints is $0.99, and a single 8″ x 10″ print is $3.47. App users can purchase their prints in-app via PayPal or credit card.
Facebook appears to be in the midst of testing voice chat with a number of its users, a feature that has been a rumored addition to the social networking site for some time. Multiple Mashable readers have sent in pictures of what appears to be a “call” button that shows up when viewing other people’s profiles, though it’s not yet clear what exactly the button enables (one tipster said it initiated a voice call but didn’t connect to anyone).
Late last year, Facebook code was uncovered that included references to Skype and Skype user IDs. Facebook and Skype already have a partnership that tightly integrates Facebook within the VoIP client, but not the other way around. Rumors of Facebook voice chat date back to 2009, however, when the company was said to be working with startup Vivox on video chat capabilities.
Facebook is also in the midst of rolling out its Messages product, a service that integrates e-mail, IM and texting under the Facebook umbrella and an @facebook.com address. One would assume then that VoIP calling would be a logical addition to what CEO Mark Zuckerberg calls a “modern messaging system.”
Such a move would yet again bring Facebook into close competition with Google, which has integrated voice calling in Gmail and made it free to make phone calls (beyond the already free user-to-user calling) in the U.S. and Canada through 2011.
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How do I know this? I looked it up on Wikipedia (Wikipedia), of course. Is it true? Possibly.
Ten years after its founding, it’s hard to imagine what life was like before Wikipedia. When I was growing up, our family had a dusty set of encyclopedias that were at least 10 years old, which is fine if you’re looking up dinosaurs, but not so good if you want to know, for instance, who the current president of the Congo is. But though the limitations of the old encyclopedias were obvious, they were authoritative in ways that Wikipedia is not.
Like most people, I’ll take the tradeoff. I have no desire to go back to the days of printed Funk & Wagnalls. If someone would have told me back in 2001 that, within a few years, there would be a comprehensive, free online encyclopedia, I wouldn’t have believed them. Why would someone do that? How?
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Grab your popcorn and Twizzlers, because 2011 is already shaping up to be an exciting year to watch startups and giants do battle for market share and big ideas. If you’re not sure which companies to look out for in the coming year, our writers and editors have submitted their expert picks below.
What do you think? Did we miss any promising tech companies (new or established) that you see making a big splash in 2011? We want — nay, demand — your forecasts in the comments below.
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