Managing Digital Photo Overload

Barry Wizoreck takes hundreds of pictures of his son. He uses a photo website to send prints to grandma and grandpa, but admits he could use some help with the thousands of pictures stored on his laptop.

Barry says, "They're extremely important to me. So if I lost them, I would be heartbroken."

Consumer Reports ShopSmart says there are more online photo sites than ever. It just checked out ten.

Judy Rohlena with Consumer Reports ShopSmart says, "We looked at storage space - how much you get, how much you'll pay - print prices, and other special features so you can figure out which site is right for you."

If you simply want some storage space like Barry, Shutterfly and Snapfish offer unlimited photo storage - no matter what.

Jody says, "Some sites like Walmart and KodakGallery require one purchase per year for that free, unlimited storage."

For beginners, Snapfish.com offers easy-to-use photo-editing options like cropping and "fixes" like removing red eye.

At Photobucket.com, a click of a button shares your pictures on sites like Facebook.

Jody adds, "Keep in mind with Photobucket, if you need more than 500 megabytes of storage - that's about 150 photos at the highest resolution -you'll pay about $25 a year."

As far as making prints, you have plenty of options. A plus at Shutterfly - if you need prints fast, you can pick them up in an hour at several locations, including Target.

Jody explains, "We didn't test for print quality, but as far as costs go, most 4X6 prints will run you anywhere from 9 to 15 cents a piece."

And ShopSmart says if you can tolerate the e-mail, sign up for special offers because you can get great deals and coupons for photo books and lots of other picture projects.

Another plus with these photo sites - they serve as a backup for your photos in case your computer crashes.

And as far as security, all ten of the sites Consumer Reports ShopSmart checked out guarantee your photos are stored securely and can only be viewed with a password.


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