PhanfareHere is a unique, best-of-the-best photo and video sharing plus photo and video (from your little digital camera and from other video sources) back up service.

It is NEVER a good idea to simply email individual photos to others for many reasons.  Here are two of the best – First, if sending lots of them, the individual size of the email may be quite large, taking lots of time to send as well as for the recipient to have to download.  Second, it’s a pain in the butt to manage this way.  A third bonus reason is that the recipient might not be able to download large files and, frankly, should not have to do so. And there are many other good reasons to NOT simply email photos directly to others.

I’ve been a Phanfare member and supporter for long enough that I am certain of this service as a standout in its category. Easy to use, really, for Mac and Windows users, this paid service is well worth the price. No ads, no pop-ups, no sign-ups required for your guests to view your images and videos and slideshows. It’s different from Kodak Gallery, Snapfish, Flikr, Dot Photo, Shutterfly, as well as Facebook (a terrible way to share and archive photos even with their new higher resolution capabilities) and all the other FREE services in several important ways.  Most others do not even accept videos. The others accept your photos for upload but ALL of these other free or nearly free-for-service companies (feel free to correct me if you learn differently) shortly thereafter reduce your big megapixel images to much smaller file sizes which are still plenty good for online viewing and maybe for small prints.  Reducing the file size saves space on their big servers.

Others’ slideshows are not nearly as cool. Hey, you get what you pay for. Phanfare takes your original photos, be they five megapixel images or 15 megapixels, and keeps them as originally uploaded.  Do simple editing, rotation, captioning and much more, ONLY if you wish.  Their slide shows are the best, too. Among the many user options, choose from NO musical accompaniment, Phanfare’s own selections or anything else you have. I sometimes use my own music that’s on my computer and upload it, making it available for use on any of my Phanfare album creations in the future.  Access to Phanfare member Sites and albums may be password protected, so only invited guests are allowed viewing privileges.

Phanfare accounts may be managed from multiple computers. I can upload photos from any of my computers, and then I can manage all my uploaded albums from my other computers, so long as the software has been installed on that computer OR I can log in and do it all online through a browser, but I prefer to use their software. I just sign in.  Phanfare visitor lists are maintained on their end for their members.  Regardless of the computer from which I have logged onto my Phanfare account, I can manage and modify photos and albums as well as invite others, since all that info is on the Phanfare end, and they have their own secure backups to protect me.

Users may view their Phanfare accounts with an iPhone app, too. What a great way to share! In addition, to all of the aforementioned advantages, users may set up their account at the site to share any albums publicly or privately, password protected.  Phanfare’s many advantages and benefits continue to grow.

If I set up an album with permission for this, my visitors can also download individual photos, the entire album or slideshow if they wish and print whatever they want on their own, either at home or through the online printing service of their choice.  I never have to make and send prints to others. My Phanfare photo invitees may also click an Order Prints link that takes them to their choice of Snapfish, Kodak or Shutterfly for online print ordering at very good prices right from the album if they do not want to deal with downloading to their computer or ordering through their own company choice and account.  It’s totally flexible.

The free-to-members Phanfare client software for Windows and Mac users is constantly being updated and improved by the good people at Phanfare. Users automatically get updates as available each time they log on to their account.  I’ve communicated with Phanfare many times to offer suggestions and to ask questions. They are quick and nice, and they even have responsive, free telephone support.  The sense of community among Phanfare members is similar to the way Mac users feel about their computers or TiVo users feel about TiVo.  Members tend to be supportive fans with a real sense of community. This is the real deal that’s really good. It’ll make you smile. I promise you.

Try it free for 30 days before you buy, but rest assured, it’s a keeper and a great gift idea.  Priced at $99/year for unlimited storage.  Here are ALL the prices for ALL their plans and services, storage and printing.  The best deal, best prices for clearly the best service of its kind online.  My choice and my recommendation is for Phanfare! In addition to all the digital photos and videos mentioned earlier, now you can also include the ability to upload photos and videos from your iPhone, iPad and other mobile phones.

Even if you’ve read to here and just don’t get it yet, please check it out with the links above to learn more. If you know someone who takes digital family photos and who would like to be able to share with friends and family, this is the way to go.  And remember the secondary yet invaluable extra; all the uploaded photos are permanently backed up by Phanfare so all those photos are safe and protected. No more worries in the event of a hard drive failure on your or your gift recipient’s end.  Now, Phanfare is also offering photo books designed by YOU as well as great prices on prints.  Start a FREE, no obligation trial and you WILL see that my recommendation is more than deserved.

I have just learned of a another benefit for Phanfare members that is, of course, at no added cost – the service accepts uploaded High Def videos that can then be viewed by family and friends in all their original quality!  Restrictions apply, of course, as to length and amount of data, as would be expected. And finally, for those of you who use Eye-Fi memory cards that have wireless connectivity built into the cards for sending photos and videos directly from the card through the nearest open wireless Internet, Phanfare is compatible!  So, you can upload to Phanfare right from the camera.  Here is the latest from Phanfare!  They now have a $29 annual plan that is ideal for those who don’t care about having Phanfare archive full-size originals.  Maybe you burn DVDs? It’s still much better than posting individual photos on Facebook. Create the same beautiful and watchable albums. Link your stunning albums in your FB pages, however.

Phanfare is now a part of Carbonite, an excellent and recommended online backup service!

Pin It on Pinterest