GREENVALE, NY -- Apple Industries is introducing a version of its Pix Place kiosk-style photobooth with "green screen" masking technology that permits customers to choose their preferred fantasy themes and then appear in them. The patron's image is rendered on one of a number of layers, adding a depth effect when the image is composited for printing or display.
Apple's "Green Screen" system made its debut in the company's Face Place Scene Machine this March. The new Pix Place is being introduced this week in Orlando, FL, at the IAAPA Attractions Expo. Named for the distinctive green color used to differentiate subject from background, "green screen" (or chroma key) compositing was developed for motion picture and television production, where it is widely used to place actors or presenters in whatever environment the director wishes -- on a distant planet, for example, or in front of a giant weather map.
The Pix Place photobooth is a freestanding kiosk without a cabinet, so there is no physical constraint on the size of the group that can be photographed. For this reason, it has found favor as an amenity at special occasions like weddings, parties and corporate events. It won the Amusement and Music Operators Association's Innovator Award in 2011, and began shipping in 2012. One of its novel features is that it can attract potential patrons as they walk past.
"More people in the picture mean more fun -- and that means more sales," said Apple chief executive Allen Weisberg.
Pix Place with green screen technology offers a menu of themes; customers can appear to stand behind an old-fashioned microphone, with searchlight beams in the background; or underwater, with colorful tropical fish swimming behind and in front of them; or any of 16 settings. Each theme includes four separate variations on the same image environments with a slightly different treatment for each of the traditional four images in a Face Place photo strip.
In addition to the "star singer" and underwater themes earlier, environment choices include Valentine's Day-style hearts; virtual "tours" of landmarks in major cities such as Manhattan, Las Vegas or Washington; two different horror movie motifs, with zombies or vampires in pursuit; a gentle children's fantasy theme, featuring rainbows and friendly unicorns; a "dinosaurs-attack-you-in-the-jungle" adventure theme; and several more.
"When we introduced green screen technology earlier this year, we said it would be rolled out across the entire Face Place line of products with the Smile 2.0 platform," Weisberg reported. "The fantasy fun of Hollywood special effects is a natural addition for Pix Place. Now the whole gang can share the photo fun together."
Operators can see Pix Place with green screen technology at Apple's booth (#1817) at the IAAPA show.