We got our first look at Parrot's DIA digital photo frame
a few days ago, and we knew immediately that we had to see it in person. So the first thing we did this morning was head over to the Parrot booth to spend some time getting acquainted with the first digital frame we've ever seen that actually induces true gadget lust. Beyond the stunning, lightbox-like design, the frame actually packs some impressive tech. The frame is powered by Android
(as is everything these days, apparently) and runs a few basic apps in addition to the basic photo slideshow. The 'Cabinet of Curiosities' app shows off black and white illustrations and highlights the transparent display. The 'Holiday' app recognizes geotags on photos and arranges them on Google
Maps. There's also an RSS app (called 'FrameChannel') for pulling in weather, sports scores and news. Sadly, the 'Holiday' and RSS apps weren't working, thanks to the nightmarish Wi-Fi situation on the showroom floor. What we didn't know is that the DIA packs a Web browser, and you can actually connect a keyboard and mouse to the USB ports. While we don't imagine you'll be doing lots of browsing on the 10.4-inch screen (it may be beautiful for photos, but it's not very practical for reading) the ability to plug in a keyboard should make logging into your photo sharing accounts much easier. There's even an iPhone app that lets you pick images from your gallery and wirelessly send them to the frame, with just the flick of a finger.
If you don't feel like plugging in a keyboard, you can always navigate the menus using the trackball and capacitive touch buttons on the top of the frame. When the DIA launches in the U.S. in February, it'll have a suggested retail price of $500 -- quite a lot to ask for a photo frame. That being said, if you've been temped by the convenience of digital frames, but just can't bring yourself to put one of the tacky, frustrating devices in your home, the DIA might just be worth every penny. And since words can't possibly do this thing justice, check out the gallery below.