Kit review: photography using an Eyefi wireless memory card & app

Testing an Eyefi Mobi wireless SD memory card with the Eyefi Mobi app that provides access to the Eyefi Cloud prompted me to think about how photos are now shared.

There’s nothing new in the idea that a digital photograph taken right now has the potential to be seen by millions of people around the world within a matter of minutes. Smart phones have made images of breaking news available instantaneously.

Traditionally, the workflow used in producing and sharing images from digital SLR cameras has been slower. However, Eyefi Mobi wireless SD memory cards make it possible to transfer images from a camera to a smart phone or mobile device. Without significant delays the images can be made available online.

SLR cameras versus smart phone photography

As a professional photographer I tend to regard the photographs I take on my mobile phone as snaps rather than serious photography. I work with a Canon 5D Mark III SLR camera but tend to play with the camera on my phone.

In part that’s because I’ve not yet invested in a high-end smart phone with a quality camera. Friends occasionally question that decision, particularly given the growth in popularity of Instagram, the photo sharing site, and the fact I blog.

Sharing photographs via social media

Those factors mean I can be slow to upload images to social media channels such as Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook. Even downloading my memory cards is a process that can take a couple of hours after a major shoot.

I tend to edit the RAW files, tweak them while they are TIFFs, then save them as JPEGs before selecting a handful for distribution via social media sites. That editing process, which includes adding captions and a watermark, can be time consuming. (It does, though, yield quality results and enables me to make my photos available to newspapers, publishing houses and photographic agencies.)

As the perceived significance of social media grows I’ve been reviewing my workflow, looking to accelerate the speed at which I make images available on social media sites.

Eyefi Mobi wireless SD memory card

Admittedly, I’ve been slow to make use of the potential of a product such as an Eyefi Mobi wireless SD memory card. The Eyefi cards enable files to be transferred from cameras to mobile devices.

I tested an 8GB memory card in my Canon SLR, after switching the Eye-Fi settings in my camera to ‘enabled’. I shot a combination of RAW and JPEG files, plus a number of photographs only as JPEGs. Both transferred successfully.

Impressively, the ability to transfers files was not dependent on me being online. I can see this being advantageous when I’m travelling in remote areas. It means journey time can be used effectively, so I have images to share on social media sites from my phone once it connects to the wi-fi in cafes or hotels.

I like the fact I can still use my SLR to photograph but don’t need to open up my laptop, connect my card reader and spend time downloading the files.

Seafood photographed in Ston, Croatia.

Seafood photographed in Ston, Croatia.

Sharing photographs across devices

Transferring the files to multiple devices can also prove a time-consuming process. The Eyefi Cloud synchronises their availability across devices and makes them available both on- and off-line.

Files can be transferred to a desktop without the need for a cable and without going over the internet.

Photos can be tagged and sorted as well as shared via Eyefi’s software.

First impressions are positive and I look forward to further testing the functionality provided by Eyefi Mobi wireless SD Memory cards (£) and Eyefi Cloud.

Further information

Three sizes of Eyefi Mobi wireless SD memory cards are available: 8GB (with a recommended retail price of £33.99), 16GB (£49.99) and 32GB (£65.99). They are available in the United Kingdom from retailers including Amazon, Cameraworld and Wex Photographic.

Eyefi Mobi apps are available to download from the Google Play, Apple and Amazon Kindle app stores. Downloading new apps and activating a new account includes a three month membership of the Eyefi Cloud. See the Eyefi website for up-to-date information regarding the cost of using the service for 12 months.

A ship in the Adriatic Sea off Dubrovnik, Croatia.

A ship in the Adriatic Sea off Dubrovnik, Croatia.

 

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