This article was sent to my from one of my bridesmaids the Monday after my bachelorette party. I found WeddingSnap after some serious internet searching and we tested it out during the bachelorette weekend. I was pretty pleased with it, except for the fact that it sucks battery life (on the iPhone at least). I love the idea of guests being able to painlessly share their photos with us. Some pretty fabulous ones were taken on iPhones during the weekend. I can’t wait to see what guests photograph at our wedding!
Vying for a Shot of the Wedding
By HEATHER SCHULTZ
To promote photo sharing at their wedding in Manchester, N.H., last month, Laura Bishop and Walter Carroll placed postcards on the tables with instructions for their guests on how to download an application called WedPics. After the reception, the couple immediately signed onto WedPics and found some 200 photographs.
“We didn’t have to chase anyone down to get pictures from our wedding,” said Mr. Carroll, 27, a sales manager for Sprint. “It was right there on WedPics for us to save right to our phones.”
Hilary Rosenman and Mo Koyfman opted for something older and more traditional, at least in social media terms, at their wedding in Dorset, Vt., last October. They created a hashtag on Instagram, an application that has been around for all of two and a half years.
As photo sharing and other forms of social media have gradually become part of the event, they have also become an opportunity for technology companies, and their investors, to capture a piece of a huge market.
About 67 million people in the United States are between the ages of 18 and 34, making up the so-called millennial generation. They grew up with the Internet and are accustomed to planning and chronicling the most important events of their lives online. That, of course, includes weddings, and with the technology and those who use it becoming more sophisticated, new possibilities are emerging for everyone — from the person holding the smartphone to the app entrepreneur.
Aside from WedPics, other specialized photo-sharing applications include Wedding Party and Wedding Snap. One observer thinks that photo sharing has begun to change the dynamics of the celebration itself.
“The millennial generation is about community and everyone being involved,” said Anne Chertoff, an editor and writer in Brooklyn who often writes about weddings. “It’s not so much about the bride being the star of the day anymore. Guests are encouraged to take photos so the bride and groom can capture everyone’s special memories.”
Justin Miller, a co-founder and the chief executive of WedPics, which has its headquarters in Raleigh, N.C., said he envisioned his application, which became available last August, as a way to capitalize on content- and photo-sharing and apply it to a niche market. With a mobile format similar to Instagram’s, guests can download the WedPics application and enter a couple’s wedding identification number to upload images directly to the couple’s album.
Both WedPics and Wedding Party are free. The Wedding Snap application is free for guests, but couples first have to buy a picture package from the company’s Web site.
Rebecca Grinnals, the president and founder of Engaging Concepts, a bridal industry consultancy in Celebration, Fla., said her technology clients see the wedding business as a springboard.
Yet Mr. Koyfman, 35, who works for a venture capital firm in Manhattan, said that asking guests to download a new application might be inconvenient, compared with, say, Instagram, which many of them probably already have.
“You want them to do what they’re already doing,” he said. “You don’t want to create a new behavior for them.”
So does this wave of innovation, with its seemingly endless electronic picture galleries, threaten to inundate the professional wedding photographer?
The Koyfmans and the Carrolls both hired photographers. And Christian Oth, a wedding photographer in Manhattan, said he did not see the emergence of the new photo applications as a danger to his business but that they could hurt less-established photographers.
“The iPhone has a great camera for more static images, but you still can’t record any good action shots with it,” Mr. Oth said. “We work with $8,000 cameras. There’s a distinctive quality difference. A photographer’s skill goes beyond just operating the camera.”
At the ground — or aisle — level, some photographers say that their frames get cluttered with waves of smartphones, point-and-shoot digital cameras and iPads.
“We’ve photographed many weddings where we can count the iPhones and point-and-shoot cameras sticking out of the aisles,” said Trent Cobb, another Manhattan photographer. “Guests will get up during the wedding ceremony themselves.”
Heather Waraksa, a photographer in Brooklyn, said that her goal was to “provide images that are capturing people’s reactions.”
“If they have a device in front of their face,” she said, “it doesn’t have the same impact or timelessness.”
When she was married last fall, Ms. Waraksa said, guests were asked — on her wedding Web site — to turn off their electronic devices during the ceremony, the toast and the cutting of the cake.
Annie Lee, a wedding planner in Manhattan, said that such requests were becoming a bit of a trend in themselves — the unplugged wedding. Ms. Lee added that she encouraged restricting electronic devices, at least during the processional, and that doing so was a way for couples to restore a measure of sanctity to their ceremony.
View the original post at Start-Ups Vie for a Slice of the Wedding Photo Cake – NYTimes.com.