In this day and age, physical photo albums are all but extinct. Most of us never print photos, and many of our memories lie in the digital-only depths of Facebook, Flickr and Instagram. But who says they have to stay there forever? A new Web service from HP's Snapfish called SocialPics prints your Facebook Timeline as a physical photo album.
Of course, you might not want an album covering your entire Facebook history, and SocialPics knows that. The service lets you choose a specific time span for your album, so you can create an album full of photos for a specific event, a specific year in your life, and so on. After you set your time span for the album, the Web service slowly loads the relevant photos and status updates and presents them in what would be the album's layout.
At this point, you can delete things, move things around, reframe your images inside their allotted spaces, swap elements you don't like, and choose different styles and color schemes. The album not only includes photos, but also important status updates and comments you made during your chosen time period. It also includes a random collection of your friends' profile pictures in the mix; if there's someone you don't want on there, you can delete that photo/person and have it replaced with another.
Compiling the digital layout is free: You can see what SocialPics comes up with by clicking the "Start your book" button on the SocialPics home page and logging into your Facebook account. When you're done editing, you'll have a 20-page, 8-inch-by-8-inch album, which you can print and keep forevermore.
Before shipping charges are applied, a soft-cover version of your customized album will cost you $19.99, while a hard-cover version will cost $28.99. That's undoubtedly more expensive than uploading an album to Facebook, but it could make a great gift for loved ones or simply serve as an original way to enjoy your own photos.
The only real downside is the minimum length of the album. With 20 pages to fill, I ended up with lots of empty spaces when I tried to use a specific time span. To fill up the space, I ended up with a jumble of five years in one album. That said, I'm a very light Facebook user.
This story, "SocialPics turns your Facebook Timeline into a real photo album " was originally published by TechHive.