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Kodak punts new EasyShare system

One-touch printing and Share button on new camera are top

Kodak is promising even easier photo sharing with the latest version of its EasyShare system.

The technology, which includes a camera dock to connect up a camera to a PC and easy-to-use software (we've tried it), was launched last year in a move designed to make emailing and viewing images simpler. Kodak has built on this, adding more email options and a one-touch print button.

The first EasyShare II products will be available by the beginning of August, and will include the Kodak EasyShare CX4230 2MP digital camera, the Camera Dock II and the EasyShare software package. The cost of the camera is £199.99, but if you want to use the EasyShare features you'll need to spend an extra £59.99 on the Dock.

The camera features a 'Share' button, which allows users to tag images for future printing or emailing. You can use the system with your existing photo printer, but some features will only work if you print to Kodak photo paper.

Kodak’s European director general, Pierre Schaeffer, believes that "more people would print out images if it were easier", which of course he would. The EasyShare software will hide the complexities of setting up images for printing — "what you see on the screen is what you will print out" explains Schaeffer.

The system has also been enhanced to make emailing images simpler, and you can now store up to 32 email addresses in the camera, so you can organise where to send photos directly on the camera.

The improvements to the EasyShare software are not the only changes Kodak has been making, as with its latest digital cameras it has ditched the Compact Flash storage media it has used in the past in favour of SD/MMC cards, which will feature in all future models.

Kodak also announced the launch of a network of digital print kiosks. The Kodak Picture Maker Digital Stations, will allow users to print out directly from memory cards, CDs or floppy disks. Users can do simple image editing onscreen and will pay for prints using a credit card. These booths will be rolled out in retail outlets towards the end of the year.

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