Lauren Goode

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Photobucket: Holidays Were All About Mobile Photos — And Fido

This past holiday season, many consumers ditched their digital cameras in favor of smartphones, a new company-sponsored report from Photobucket says.

Data from the popular photo-sharing service shows the number of mobile photo app users who use the apps at least once a day doubled to 42 percent, up from 20 percent midyear in 2011.

Meanwhile, only 64 percent reported using digital cameras to capture the majority of their images throughout the season, down from 82 percent a year ago.

Anecdotally, this means more bad news for camera makers, as they become increasingly threatened by smartphones with decent image-taking capabilities.

The Photobucket report also points out that pets were, shall we say, very present in this year’s holiday cards. Some 41 percent of respondents used an image for their holiday cards; among pet owners, 58 percent included Fido/Rudolph in the photo.

The surge in smartphone use didn’t apply to just pictures: Capturing videos on mobile devices also saw a jump during the holidays. A full 80 percent of survey respondents took video using a mobile device at least once throughout the season, up from 59 percent in Photobucket’s summer sampling, while 50 percent of respondents used a mobile device to record video daily or multiple times a day.

While already-avid users of mobile photo apps increased their usage this past holiday season, a substantial 43 percent of respondents indicated they have yet to try a mobile app for taking photos.

Photobucket says it gathered responses from more than 2,200 survey participants, and culled data from Photobucket’s more than nine billion image uploads for the report.

(Photo courtesy of HollyLovesArt/Flickr)


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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus