Transform your digital iPhone images into real instant photographs that you can touch, caress and share with friends. Read more
This project was successfully funded on October 8, 2012.
About this project
Thanks to everyone who pledged and enabled us to double our original funding goal!
With our Kickstarter campaign having ended, you still have the chance to be among the first to receive your personal Instant Lab. Please visit www.the-impossible-project.com to start diving into the magic of analog instant photography now.
For press, please find hi res photos and further information here. For press inquiries please contact marlene(at)the-impossible-project.com
Gizmodo - "Impossible looks to do the Impossible and turn your phone snaps into real, instant photos."
Cult of Mac - "This seems to be the perfect marriage between the analog and digital worlds."
uncrate - "Forget AirPrint - if you're looking for a way to get your photos out of your iPhone and onto some paper, the Impossible Instant Lab can get the job done."
Magnate - "The coolest iPhone photography accessory you've ever seen."
CNET Crave - "Polaroid cameras used to be the coolest things. You just don't get the same thrill from capturing your photo on your smartphone. Until now."
psfk - "The Impossible Instant Lab solves the problem of printing pictures from the iPhone, ejecting your photos ready to develop in the palm of your hand."
core77 - "The Instant Lab allows cameraphone shutterbugs to print their images as genuine Polaroid snapshots, iconic white border and all."
Pop Photo - "There's a whole cottage industry popping up centered around printing out iPhone photos, but this Kickstarter is one of the most interesting options."
Your digital images transformed into real instant photographs. That’s impossible, right?
Right! We are Impossible and we love instant photography. We love it so much, we were crazy enough to buy the last Polaroid factory in order to save instant film for the future. If you've ever held an SX 70 in your hand, you probably understand. It's such a beautiful piece of design and the photos it makes are so different from any other camera - unique and magical. But even we instant film aficionados take a lot of pictures with our iPhones, so we wanted to find a way to turn those digital iPhone images into true instant photos.
Well … we invented it. The Impossible Instant Lab!
Melt those iPhone Pixels into a True Analog Photograph.
The Impossible Instant Lab is designed to transform any digital image via your iPhone into an instant photo that is exposed using only the light from the display, then processed and developed by chemicals. A photo that exists physically – IRL. A photo that is a one-of-a-kind original that can be shared, exhibited and preserved. A photo that no longer needs an electronic device to be seen.
Easy to use. Everywhere.
Just select an image from the Instant Lab app, place the iPhone in the cradle and slide open the shutter on the base. A signal tells you when the exposure is finished. Close the shutter, push the button and the Instant Lab ejects your photo, ready to develop in the palm of your hand. That’s it!
Collapse the tower and the Instant Lab is fully portable and ready to go wherever your heart desires.
The Impossible Instant Lab Story
A passionate team of old and young, brand new and vastly experienced instant photography aficionados came together a year ago, pursuing the idea to develop a new instant camera for Impossible. On the way we came up with the idea of the Instant Lab. We built the first prototype, shot the first photos and finally developed the perfect design. We involved professionals in fine mechanics, optics, usability design, production design and app design to create a great device with a hands-on user experience.
Revolutionary concept and design - high quality production - made in Germany
We teamed up with Prof. Achim Heine, Berlin, the industrial designer who designed the Leica Digilux 1 in 2002, a revolutionary camera which transfers the tangible analog values of photography into the digital age.
With the design and concept of the Impossible Instant Lab he embraces these two worlds again by creating a beautiful device which transforms your digital images into pure and magic Impossible instant photos.
Our production partner is DHW Fototechnik in Braunschweig, Germany, a successor of the legendary camera producer Rollei, where highly-skilled engineers still produce analog cameras and optical devices until today.
Your Impossible Instant Lab: We will get it done – and on time.
We have fully engineered each individual piece of the 48 parts of the device. We have a handful of fully working prototypes. We have selected all necessary vendors and tool makers. We have carefully planned a timeline for the mass-production and delivery of the devices approximately 22–24 weeks after Kickstarter funding, starting mid-February 2013. Orders are processed in the order received. Kickstarter is the only place we will offer it for pre-sale. Grab your device now. We’ll keep you posted with updates during production.
- Cradle compatible with iPhone4/4s AND iPhone 5 included. We are also working on a cradle for at least one Android device, please stay tuned to our website for updates.
- Dimensions (metric): collapsed 148mm long x 111mm wide x 62mm tall; expanded 176mm tall
- Dimensions (english): collapsed 5.8" long x 4.3" wide x 2.4" tall; expanded 6.9" tall
- Micro-processor-controlled film development unit with Smart Charger
- Li-Ion rechargable battery – 150(!) development cycles with one charge
- Compatible with instant film for Polaroid 600 and SX 70 cameras
- International Patent Pending
Meet the Makers: Impossible
Impossible is the only company producing instant film for original Polaroid™ cameras today. We started our great adventure in 2008 by purchasing the world's last remaining Polaroid film factory in Enschede, The Netherlands and restarted production. Impossible was founded on the simple conviction that analog things have major value in a digital world. So far, we have opened up Impossible Project spaces in NYC, Tokyo, Paris, Vienna and Enschede.
SDK Developers and App Makers are Welcome!
Yes, we will openly publish the app code for the developing process through an SDK. Anyone can incorporate the exposure module (color tables, exposure times, film types) into their own app. You can also create your own awesome app that does much more than just developing a photo. Using the many tools available from Apple, you can apply all kinds of pre-processing, add layers, mix photos together, etc. We are already thrilled to see what you will build around this device and what exciting photos will come from it. Surprise and impress us!
All we need is you. Your support. Your action. Your backing.
With your help, we are ready to:
- Order the injection molds and production tools: a huge one-time investment
- Order the first production quantities: we are working with deeply experienced manufacturers, but we need to know how many to make, and more is better
- Manufacture the optical wide-angle lens system: the high-quality, anti-reflection coated, precision glass lenses- and again, more is better
Let’s Get Started!
Get this device before it hits retail and for a big discount over the $299 retail price. Show your support by selecting any of the pledge levels on the right. Enlist others! Spread the word! The more we can raise, the better and faster we can produce. We thank you for believing in the Impossible. Together with you we will make it happen!
Join our nearly 30,000 Facebook friends at http://www.facebook.com/theimpossibleproject to share and discuss the Instant Lab.
Many people dedicated their time, energy, vibes and mojo into this project. We say special thanks to:
- The incredible Impossible team and DHW
- Our friends at Heine/Lenz/Zizka in Berlin and Frankfurt for love and support
- Our very spontaneous director/DP Andreas Schimanski for the project video
- Soaring piano found @ audiojungle and instrumental "Sunshine" by James Peel for the music in our video
- Toni, Katharina, Phillip and friends from Berlin, for starring in our video
- AND YOU, THE KICKSTARTER BACKERS, WHO MAKE THE IMPOSSIBLE POSSIBLE!
After closing of Kickstarter and early enough before shipment, you will be provided with a link to our online tool, where you can check and define all details for customization and shipping.
Instant Film compatible with Polaroid 600 and Polaroid SX70 cameras. Like the PX680 and PX70 films from The Impossible Project.
Instant Lab is shipped with a cradle for iPhone4/4S and iPhone 5. The cradle can be easily changed by yourself (press&click). We are planning to support some Android phones as well, but there are 2 form factors for iPhones and over 4.000 for Android phones. We try to figure out which Android models could make sense to produce. Please participate in this survey to let us know: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/V6LHQH7
The Instant Lab will ship with a cradle compatible with iPhone 4/4S, iPhone 5 and iPod Touch 4th and 5th Generation models.
USA: In USA shipping is included, sales tax is added where applicable.
Europe: For countries in the European Union PLEASE ADD $35 to your pledge amount. This included shipping and includes VAT (eg 19% in Germany, 20% in Italy, etc). Goods are delivered with EU-Invoice from Austria, you do not have to deal with import taxes, duty or anything. Delivered to your door.
Japan: please back us here http://camp-fire.jp/projects/view/418
Rest of world: please add $20 for shipping. During delivery the couriers/postal service may collect from you VAT (if applicable) and maybe duty (if applicable, which in most countries is however not the case for such a good). There may also be a charge by the postal service for doing the import process for you.
European orders will be fulfilled by our European office. The additional fee of $35 includes the VAT (Germany 19%, Italy 20%, etc.) and courier shipping to your delivery address.
Devices shipped to USA, European Union and Japan are covered with the legal warranty of each respective country. Rest of world has a 6-month warranty. All sales are final.
Warranty is provided exclusively against manufacturing defects. As the developed photo is influenced by motive, development settings, temperature etc, there is no warranty for results, usability, quality of photos - but they will be cool! Check sample photos to determine what you will get: http://shop.the-impossible-project.com/gallery/index.php…
We are in the process of creating an online tool to handle all follow-up after the end of the campaign. We will contact all backers and supply you with a URL. This tool will let you confirm shipping address and other details - including adding more film to your order if you wish.
Pledge $149 or more
222 backers All gone!
Get the Ball Rolling! The first 222 backers get one Instant Lab for HALF of the $299 retail price. Includes 1 Impossible film voucher. Shipping US: Free / Shipping Europe: Add $35 (incl VAT) / Shipping Rest of World: Add $20 (no tax or import duties incl)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $189 or more
1,110 backers Limited (1 left of 1111)
Early Birds! We can offer a limited number of 1,111 units at this price. Includes 1 Impossible film voucher. Shipping US: Free / Shipping Europe: Add $35 (incl VAT) / Shipping Rest of World: Add $20 (no tax or import duties incl)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $229 or more
Get your INSTANT LAB at a great price before it hits stores. Your pledges will decide how many we make. Includes 1 Impossible film voucher. Shipping US: Free / Shipping Europe: Add $35 (for VAT and shipping) / Shipping Rest of World: Add $20 (no tax or import duties incl)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $299 or more
442 backers Limited (558 left of 1000)
Special ALL BLACK Kickstarter Exclusive Edition! 1000 numbered units, engraved with your Kickstarter username. Includes 2 Impossible film vouchers. Shipping US: Free / Shipping Europe: Add $35 (incl VAT) / Shipping Rest of World: Add $20 (no tax or import duties incl)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $444 or more
41 backers Limited (403 left of 444)
Due to popular request - The DOUBLE-UP PACK! Select this level to receive 2 original Instant Labs and 2 film vouchers for a great price. Make sure to read Update #2 to see how to get twice the film... Shipping US: Free / Shipping Europe: Add $45 (for VAT and shipping) / Shipping Rest of World: Add $30 (no tax or import duties incl)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $1,099 or more
STORE KIT. Be among the first stores to carry Instant Labs - or just pick up 5 at a great price to share with friends! At this level, you'll get 5 Instant Labs, plus 10 Impossible film vouchers and printed POS materials. U.S. individuals or organizations in MA or NY must add local sales tax to their pledge. Resellers must supply valid credentials. Shipping Rest of World: Add $50. Price is net. Invoices issued in NY for USA/NAFTA, in Austria for EU/EMEA (with UID.Nr.), in Japan for Asia/APAC.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $2,000 or more
10 backers All gone!
The Ultimate Instant Lab GOLD Edition. Receive one of only 10 numbered GOLD-plated Instant Labs, personalized with your name engraved onto the device. Enjoy: brunch at the famous Hotel Americain in Amsterdam, Holland. A luxury coach round-trip to Enschede. A founders tour of the Impossible (former Polaroid) factory and a fantastic dinner cooked & served by founders Doc, Christian and André in the factory canteen. Includes 10 film packs of your choice. You will receive the FIRST completed devices and films during the factory dinner. Schedule to be arranged in 2nd half of February 2013.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $2,099 or more
DISTRIBUTOR KIT. Get into the real photo business with 10 Instant Labs, plus 60 packs of Impossible film and printed POS material. U.S. individuals or organizations in MA or NY must pay sales tax. Resellers must supply valid credentials. Shipping Rest of World: Add $50. Price is net. Invoices issued in NY for USA/NAFTA, in Austria for EU/EMEA (with UID.Nr.), in Japan for Asia/APAC.Estimated delivery:
- (28 days)