You would think the story of how Spark came to be investing in Picturelife would be simple enough. After all the Founder, Charles Forman, was also the founder of OMGPOP, another Spark portfolio company. But actually Charles had been keeping a low profile with his new gig, so it initially came to our attention in the best way possible, as a user.
I used to categorize, tag, and lovingly care for all my photos on Flickr. But the product stagnated over time and, thanks to the cameraphone, the volume of photos I take has gone up so much that that those old solutions didn’t seem to apply anymore.
In Flickr’s place was Instagram and Facebook. They are wonderful experiences, but they are communication mediums for the 1% of photos worth sharing. What about the other 99%? iCloud was great but I want more than the last 1,000 photos on my device, I want all of them, and shareable to the services I care about like Tumblr and Twitter without hurdles. Google, and Microsoft had solutions of course, but they seemed more obsessed with locking you into their platforms than creating new experiences.
Finally the team at Picturelife let us in on their project. I was hooked. Hooked on the product, on the vision for where it was headed, and hooked on the team.
Charles, Jacob, and Nate talk with passion about the subtle difficulties of managing our ever-increasing collection of photos in ways that are universal and understandable. They talked about how Gmail made you never want to delete an email, and what a photo interface might need to be some day in order to achieve something similar.
We’re glad to be partnering with Charles again, and to be supporting their mission to safely store the 360 billion photos taken each year, organize them beautifully, and make them accessible everywhere.
“Instagram and Facebook. They are wonderful experiences, but they are communication mediums for the 1% of photos worth sharing. What about the other 99%?”
Why is the other 99% worth anything? In an era where film is free, you’d expect the ratio of “good” photos to “bad” photos to approach 1%:99%.