"Good picture, Difficult Internet Setup, Mom Loves It"3.5 starson by tjamison
Pros: Overall satisfied; Basic capabilities are easy to use; Reasonably good image quality; Good resolution; Mom loves it!
Cons: Setting up for internet update was complex; Panel button interface is clunky when entering data; Some colors not rendered well - extremely bright and oversaturated; Manual could be better; No upload from my Mac PowerBook; Poor sound.
Summary: I got this for my Mom (81 yrs old, can barely use email) with the idea that I could set it up to update automagically from the web. I live in VA and Mom lives in NJ, so asking her to control the thing beyond turning it on was out of the question.
Set up out of the box was easy. If I was just using it for local display, it is a no brainer (but then why have the wifi capability). Turning on the wifi was pretty easy too, except for using the slide motion on the "keyboard" to enter the 26 char password. There's got to be a better way. I couldn't upload any pics directly from my Mac, but was planning to set up an internet capability anyway.
I haven't been a web photo site user, so I had to set up an account for me, an account for her, and tie them together somehow. There were so many options that it was quite confusing (FrameChannel, Flickr, EasyShare, .Mac, etc.). I tried a bunch of different things and finally got Flickr to work, but never did get anything else to work right. FrameChannel seems like a good idea, but it always told me I had 0 photos in the channel.
I set up my Flickr acct with a single folder that I can add photos to. I shared the folder with her and added it to her account. I added the userid and pw for the Flickr acct - again a pain using the blasted keyboard - and it showed up on the W1020 under <myusername>'s Sets. I couldn't get the <myusername>'s photostream to work. Not sure why. I also could not select more than one set. The way its set up now, I can add photos to the folder and when the frame is powered off and on again it will update to load the new photos. Sometimes it seemed to forget the setting, so I wrote my Mom instructions for reconnecting to the Flickr set. I hope she can follow them.
The picture quality was good, although some of the brighter pictures seemed over saturated. It may be color profile issue with Mac, where my pics originated. Most color images looked OK. B&W oldies looked very good. Did not try video. Sound was very poor, coming from tiny speakers in the back. But then again I wasn't buying it for sound, anyway, so I turned off the volume. I set up the automatic on-off timer, but it didn't seem to work. Not sure why.
Overall, I'm pretty satisfied with it. Initial setup was easy, but it took me the better part of a day to try and get something working with the on-line thing. Some of that is poor documentation for the on-line services, which could be remedied by better instructions with the frame. Someone who is already a Flickr or FrameChannel user would probably find it easier. I imagine that there are plenty of folks like me who want to set it and forget it for their non-techie parents or grandparents. You can't expect them to be navigating hard to understand buttons and poorly implemented sliding interfaces. I was able to get it up and hope it keeps working well.
Free suggestion to Frame Developers: Make one that connects to the internet and can be controlled completely remotely via a web page. I would be able add or delete photos, change the set or sets being displayed, etc., all from my home.