Simple answer: Zink paper is a full-color paper for digital devices that contains everything you need to produce a color print without the use of a separate ink cartridge. The Zink process was developed inside Polaroid Corporation around 2005 and is currently used in few products from companies such as Canon, HP, LG, Kodak or Polaroid.
Amazon: Zink Paper
The Zink technology (stands for Zero Ink) is one of the latest approaches to printing. With a focus on portability and user-friendliness, this patented technology shifts the printing from ink cartridges to ink-free systems and allows users to get a photo instantly.
Before printing, the Zink paper is white and looks normal. However, all the colors you need for high-quality printing are embedded in this unique paper. It consists of color layers in cyan, magenta, and yellow, that are all sensitive on the heat. As the paper goes through the thermal printhead of the camera or printer, each color responds to a different temperature. Don´t worry, this process takes less than a minute for colored high-quality photography.
Polaroid Invented The Zink Technology
The Zink technology was developed inside Polaroid Corporation around 2005 and two years later was created a Zink Holdings LLC, a company that now produces the patented Zink paper and licenses it out for the majority of camera and printer companies like HP, Polaroid, Fuji or Canon.
The Zink paper is available in various formats like 2 x 3 inch or 3 x 4 inch that is suitable for most portable printers or all-in-one cameras. However, there is also a special Zink paper that is only used in Polaroid Pop camera and comes in 3.5 x 4.25-inch format. All these variants are available at Amazon.
Which Cameras And Portable Printers Are Using Zink Paper?
This unique technology can be found in some portable printers and camera-printer combinations. We will mention a few of them:
- HP Sprocket
- LG Pocket Photo
- Polaroid Zip
- Polaroid PoGo
- Prynt Pocket
Combined digital cameras
- Polaroid Mint¨
- Polaroid Snap
- Polaroid Pop
- Polaroid SocialMatic
- Kodak Printomatic
HP Sprocket Photo Paper 2 x 3 inch – The 2 x 3 inch is a standard size of Zink paper that can be used not only with HP printers supporting the Zink technology but Canon or Polaroid too.
Polaroid 3.5 x 4.25 inch – Each user of the popular Polaroid POP needs to use this paper. It is developed exclusively for this instant digital camera and comes with a 3.5 x 4.25-inch size, where each sheet is treated with a protective layer that shields it from tears, water damage, and smudges.
Main photo by Polaroid
- Zink (technology), Wikipedia
- How Ink-free Mobile Photo Printers Work, HowStuffWorks
- Zink Technology, Zink
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