15 Jun 2015 Pixendr Launches iOS App for Uploading to Multiple Microstock Agencies

Launching today, Pixendr (iTunes, website) is, at least initially, a mobile app for uploading images to multiple microstock agencies. It’s the brainchild of a Berlin based team of developers and entrepreneurs who want to reduce friction for people selling photos. Yes, we’ve heard this before from the likes of LookStat, iSyndica -which both closed- and picWorkflow, the only ‘service-based’ distributor still keeping on.

So let’s take a closer look at Pixendr and see if we think they’ll having staying power.

What is Pixendr?

It’s starting life as a free iOS app which enables you to upload and keyword your images to multiple microstock agencies from your iPhone or iPad. For now, it doesn’t do submission, but that’s on the roadmap.

The uploads are sent to Pixendr servers, and from there on to the supported microstock agencies. And yes, that does mean your login credentials are stored on their servers.

Who created it

Pixendr was created by a team of developers lead by Florin Capilnean, a mobile app specialist based in Berlin, Germany.  He is currently head of Product Management at Delivery Hero where he’s been since March this year, so Pixendr is a side project for all involved.  For now, they’re exploring the usability and niche, leaving monetisation for some future time.

How does it work?

Pixendr allows you to upload a limited amount of files per day from your mobile device into their server.  You can raise your uploading limit by sharing the app on Facebook, and they plan to have paid options in the future. From the server, the files are delivered to the microstock agencies you configure in the app.

Pixendr screenshot

At the moment they support Shutterstock, Fotolia, Dreamstime, 123RF, Bigstock, Canstock, Pond5 and Depositphotos, hoping to add more agencies soon.

Although in the future it might include more features under a paid model, the app itself and the daily uploading availability will always be free of charge, according to Florin.

The app is intended for photos shot on your device, but also suppors DSLR shots you’ve imported.

The initial target market is new photographers who aren’t currently in microstock, but the plan is to continue adding functionality that’s useful for microstockers, eventually targeting the entire photography market.

The app provides keyword suggestions for imported images, and they hope to add other in-app post production and user services (i.e. earnings data) within time.

Other exciting things on the roadmap include a Lightroom plugin and a Photoshop Extension, and then a web app, all of which will be supported by the existing backend infrastructure.  

Considerations

It’s a known difficult space, but the Pixendr team are not deterred.  They believe they can find a place in this market.  And given their side-project status, they have time to find the best solutions without pressure to generate revenue.

Starting with a mobile app for non-mobile distribution is a little unusual. For an existing workflow this adds a difficult step – getting the images onto the mobile device- while removing an easy one: uploading to multiple agencies.

There’s certainly fewer than 50,000 microstock contributors active in any one year, likely much less, and aiming for newbies doesn’t really change that. The majority of contributors are time rich and cash poor and have proven unwilling to spend money in distribution assistance services.  But this is the challenge Pixendr is taking on.

It’ll be interesting to see how they do with their first product, and where they go from there.

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