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Jobo poised to ship photoGPS receiver for digital cameras  
Wednesday, September 17, 2008 | by Rob Galbraith
First announced in early 2007, Jobo is now preparing to ship its photoGPS receiver for hot shoe-equipped digital cameras. The compact, lightweight unit is meant to ride in a camera's flash shoe, grabbing GPS data whenever the camera takes a picture (the device detects the pulse coming through the shoe, and takes that as its cue to store a GPS reading). This data is later married with the associated photo using companion software.

Easy Rider: A Jobo photoGPS sitting in the hot shoe of a Canon digital SLR (Photo courtesy Jobo)

The Jobo photoGPS is slated to ship in October 2008 at a manufacturer's suggested list price of US$159 in the U.S. and €159 in Europe. The photoGPS software will initially work only on Windows. Mac compatibility is promised by the end of the year.

More information is in the press release below.

Press Release

JOBO AG Launches photoGPS at Photokina 2008

New capture and process technology provides a lightweight and easy-to-use GPS unit that
significantly changes the way photographers track a photograph’s exact location

Gummersbach, Germany (September 17, 2008) Photokina Hall 5.1, Stand A010 / A018 – JOBO AG announces today the availability of the new JOBO photoGPS – a small and lightweight Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver that fits directly on any digital camera’s hot shoe, just as if it were a regular flash unit, without the need for extra cables. Through an innovative new capture and process technology, this affordable new device allows automatic geo-tagging by capturing raw GPS data and time which enables new and more efficient ways to organize, search, visualize, and share photo collections.

“In response to today’s mobile lifestyles, geo-tagging of photographs is becoming an increasingly popular technology for today’s picture-taking consumers,” said Johannes Bockemuehl-Simon, JOBO’s CEO. “JOBO’s new photoGPS has been designed to be easy-to-use and extremely compact allowing it to be a travel-friendly accessory for people wanting to share the joy of their adventurous lifestyle with others. Other mostly organizer-based geo-tagging solutions can be both expensive and/or cumbersome. Our goal at JOBO was to automate this process, which we have accomplished with our breakthrough new photoGPS and capture and process technology enabling photographers to find specific images that they want to share within seconds.”

Each time a photographer’s digital camera takes a picture with the photoGPS attached to the camera’s hot shoe, JOBO’s photoGPS automatically captures raw GPS data too and stores this information in its own internal memory. When the photographer has finished taking photographs, they unload their photos onto their PC in their normal way and transfer the companion raw GPS data information onto the PC with the included JOBO photoGPS software. Matching times and locations is quick and easy, since the photos and raw GPS data were captured simultaneously.

Next, the JOBO photoGPS server (accessible via the Internet) provides historic GPS satellite information corresponding to the times the raw GPS data was recorded. This is used by JOBO’s PC software to calculate the locations, reverse geocodes them, and geotags the photos with the resulting location information such as Country name, Region and District, City, Postal code, Street name, and nearby points of interest (POIs) such as tourist attractions, beaches, mountain peaks, museums, opera or theatre houses, concert halls, sport stadiums, parks, etc. In addition, Latitude, Longitude and Altitude are also available.

And the JOBO photoGPS consumes very little power. One capture just needs 18 Megajoule (MJ). It is the camera’s flash synchronization connection that instantly awakens photoGPS.

photoGPS Specifications:
Capture time:                approximately 0.2 seconds
Hot-shoe interface:            Standard hot-shoe (ISO 518:2006)
Power source:                 Internal rechargeable120mAh cell (non user replaceable)

System Information:            via 2 LED’s (System Status)
Memory capacity:             around 1000 locations (build in 128MB memory)
Accuracy:                10m
Geodata:                via Tele Atlas Map Material (Country, City, Street, POI)
Supported file formats:         JPEG, RAW with XMP Sidecar file
Dimensions:                 Main unit without adapter 2.7 x .8 x 1.7 inches
Weight:                    2. ounces
PC connectivity:             USB2.0
Battery charging electrical source:     USB2.0
System requirements:         Windows XP (SP2) and Vista (SP1), MAC available by end of 2008
Included accessories:             USB cable, CD-ROM with photoGPS matching software, organizer and viewing software

The JOBO photoGPS includes USB cable, user’s manual, PC compatible CD-ROM featuring photoGPS matching software for Geocoding and Reverse Geocoding, ITag Photo-Organizer by IPTC Data, and Irfan View, a powerful Image viewer with EXIF / IPTC function. The JOBO photoGPS is expected to be available for Windows operating systems in October 2008. Mac OS versions will be released by the end of 2008. Suggested retail price for the JOBO photoGPS is $159.

JOBO is a family-owned company now in its third generation of family leadership. Having been founded in 1923, it has built up a reputation for quality, professionalism, and commitment. These core values remain their keys for continuous success in times of vast technological changes, growing markets, and globalization.

Through innovation and ingenuity JOBO has created standards within the imaging industry. For example, JOBO created the product class of small-volume, high-quality photo processors. And NASA pictures of the first flight to the moon (Apollo 11) were processed using JOBO equipment.

JOBO is also one of the first exhibitors of the most important photo trade shows in the world – photokina, founded in 1950. This year JOBO celebrates its 85th anniversary and 30th time at photokina taking place in Cologne, Germany, September 23-28, 2008. Continuous close interaction with photo dealers and end users has been critical in making JOBO an indisputable market leader in the world of photography.

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