Polaroid ‘Swing’ aims to help an old brand learn a new trick

Polaroid, the iconic but indebted camera company that endured two bankruptcies in less than 10 years, is ready for its digital era close-up.The company is getting a second chance at life with “Polaroid Swing,” which it recently launched and basically functions as a digital Polaroid. The app lets users take 60 frames in one second, capturing an action that plays back almost like a moving portrait out of “Harry Potter.” Polaroid Swing, as the name suggests, lets users swing their lenses from one side to the other in order to replay an action.”The big thing with this exercise was going back to the core purpose of Polaroid, which was to make available a new medium of expression,” Frederick Blackford, one of Swing’s co-founders, told CNBC recently.”We started with the app because we wanted to connect it with as many people as possible, but the challenge was how to innovate not only on mobile but other platforms in the physical and virtual world,” he said.It’s a bold move for reclaiming relevancy in a world where traditional cameras have been cannibalized by smartphones. In years past, a Polaroid was synonymous with instant pictures: With one click, the camera would whir, print a filtered version of the real world, then slowly let its film develop as it was met with light. Later, that moment could get replayed by just looking at the photo in your hand, or in an album, or taped on a refrigerator.

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