At Framee our mission is to connect long-distance families by making shared photographs a part of their surroundings.
The long distance family
More and more families live apart from one another. Families like ours. And there are fun visual tools for them to stay in touch. A Skype video call at the weekend, a quick WhatsApp share to say hi or a birthday photo post on someone’s Facebook page. But all of these seem temporary. We’re fascinated by ways that shared photographs could be used to shrink distances between loved ones by becoming part of the actual decor, not just as bits of a conversation.
The hidden photographs
We take and share these photographs more than ever before. More photographs were shared last year alone than were taken in over 180 years of photography. It’s wonderful! But all too often these photographs flash briefly across our small phone screens before those screens disappear into our pockets and those photographs disappear into feeds or folders – never to be seen again. As we print less often, photographs have become temporary messages. But we feel the more important photographs could be a part of our environment – filling the screens that increasingly surround us.
The forgotten devices
Some of the most common screens around us are tablets. But the relentless march of iOS and Android updates has left behind over a quarter of a billion tablets. A quarter billion. Wonderful devices that start to become unusably slow or unable to access the apps we all love. Powerful hardware that is relegated to drawers or cupboards after only a few years of use. And we think that’s a waste.
The neglected environment
There is also a tragic environmental impact of this wasteful trend. Not only do we plunder natural resources from some of the poorest countries in the world to create these tablets, but we then ship these discarded devices back to many of the same countries to dispose of our hazardous ‘e-waste’. It’s not only morally questionable, it’s environmentally unsustainable. We’re excited by the idea of re-using screens we already have, instead of buying new things.
Framee is simple. It turns that old tablet sitting in your drawer into a smart photo frame that you can remotely update with your phone. So a little piece of you can always sit on Grandma’s mantlepiece. Or your boyfriend’s day at work can be brightened by funny photos from you on his desk. And devices that may have been thrown out or wasted get a second life, while photographs that may have been neglected can be enjoyed as part of our surroundings.
We hope you enjoy using Framee as much as we loved building it.
Alberto and Nick