To get your photos out of your smartphone and give them better exposure, Netgear and its company Meural have designed a new version of their Meural digital frame. Smaller than its predecessors, it uses the same recipe with the possibility of displaying your best shots or making a table for artistic works.
After a first foray into large format digital and connected photo frames (21.5 and 27 inches), Meural – a company belonging to Netgear – is making another attempt by lowering its ambitions. This time, its connected frame opts for a screen diagonal of 15.6 inches. Not only does its price decrease, but Meural is also becoming easier to imagine in an interior.
The principle remains the same: placed on its foot or hung on the wall, the digital frame comes alive with your photos or works of art downloaded from the library offered in the cloud. And this is its main interest in differentiating itself from the competition. In this regard, it shares some similarities with The Frame, Samsung’s incredible TV screen that can become a painting.
A frame made for the photo
In terms of design, the Meural uses the codes of the painting and the photo that we want to exhibit. It has the appearance of a beautiful wooden frame with wide gray outlines (19.05 cm x 34.29 cm), powered by an electrical cord and a 20 W outlet.
To offer a vivid display of your best shots and even your videos, the screen has an anti-reflective IPS panel (1920 x 1080p) and patented TrueArt technology that allows you to enjoy the photo or the picture under n ‘ any angle. The rendering is quite pleasant and not too bright that you are dazzled if you take a look at it. When you choose an artistic work, the screen looks rather realistic and not too “screen”.
In terms of Wi-Fi 5, we find here the know-how of the parent company Netgear. The configuration is very simple and fast. This will be used in particular to communicate between the frame and the application of your smartphone (iOS and Android). To display your photos, you have to go through the Meural application which will allow you to configure the frame. You can then add the photos and videos from your smartphone or create albums.
You can choose the display duration, freeze the image or display them randomly. Little more pleasant: the brightness can be adjusted according to the ambient lighting and the frame can also go into standby mode if the room in which it is located is in the dark.
If the simple photo frame had its heyday some time ago, the Meural connected photo frame brings another dimension. It is now possible to give remote access to relatives or friends so that they too can share photos and videos remotely thanks to the transmitted access. This will be ideal for sending vacation photos and videos to parents or grandparents.
The frame can display photos and videos in portrait or landscape format depending on the orientation you have chosen. It is equipped with an orientation sensor which switches the display, in particular supported by the movement sensor which allows gesture recognition as much on one of the lengths as on its width on the left.
Be careful, however, you do not necessarily switch to the right format between the photos of the chosen album if you orient suddenly. Photos that were supposed to be horizontal (especially comic pages that you can view) have occasionally been cut off if they were not originally sent for portrait viewing. A little readjustment in the library and you’re done. You can also choose that the frame displays, among your playlist, only the contents with the correct orientation.
Thousands of works of art available
The frame is not tactile, but responds to gesture commands. It is especially for ” do not touch the artwork “. It is reactive enough to compensate and its controls are very basic: swipe right or left to switch from one photo to another, up or down to validate and change the look of the frame.
The great interest of Meural is obviously its access to a library of thousands of works of art, sometimes by world-famous artists (we find Rembrandt, Edward Hopper, Claude Monet, etc.). In total, more than 30,000 works are available in the Meural cloud library. You will be able to choose Japanese prints likeThe Girl with a Pearl Earringby Vermeer. It is doomed to grow richer over time. You can add them to already created playlists with your own photos and videos. There are also relaxation videos designed by Sharecare Windows that will help you reduce your stress and relax in the surroundings.
With the simple frame, you get 4GB of cloud storage and 100 free artwork. To have access to a larger catalog, it will cost 9.99 euros per month or 79 euros per year. For that price, you can also compile 20 GB of cloud storage.
To make Meural a real painting, you will have to use the fixings provided in the box (plugs and screws + wall fixing). It requires a little DIY, but the effect is successful on the wall.
At a time when you are content to pile up thousands of photos to admire them on your smartphone, or even when they are dropped into oblivion on this small screen, the Meural frame has the merit of trying to give them a best fate.
Netgear Meural frame price and availability
The Meural 15.6-inch frame is available at the recommended price of 349.99 euros. The annual subscription to the Meural art library is billed at 79 euros (or 9.99 euros per month).
The Meural Canvas II is offered at 649 euros with a 21.5-inch screen or 849 euros with a 27 inch screen. Add 50 euros for the wood finishes and 49.99 euros for the swivel bracket.