Sunday, May 12, 2013

Coinstar's Star Studio Updates Photo Kiosks

My local mall has a new kiosk: Coinstar's Star Studio, which updates the old photo booth idea by providing opportunities to snap individual/group photos and jazz 'em for uploading onto Facebook. As the photo below shows, you step into the booth and select a background, smile for the photo, add decorations, and click to share on Facebook.

According to a 2012 article in the Seattle Times, this is one of several new kiosk ideas being piloted by Coinstar, best known for its coin-counters and its RedBox DVD/vid game kiosks. Here's the Seattle Times summary of Star Studio's marketing:

Target audience: Girls 7 to 17.
Projected sales: $30,000 to $35,000 per booth a year.
Prices: $6 to $12, depending on the number of prints requested.
Biggest surprise: Flattering lights, stereo surround sound, and fun photo backdrops.

Star Studio is on Twitter (just under 2,000 followers) and Facebook (just under 3,000 likes). It invites followers to vote on which photo backgrounds to add or bring back. As a novelty, it's fun. But I wonder how many teens will use Star Studio regularly, which is a must to build revenues and profitability.

By the way, Coinstar is planning to change its corporate name to Outerwall, reflecting its expansion beyond coin counting and into other automated retail concepts.

For an update on Star Studio, see my blog post here.

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