Nearly a decade ago, Polaroid died (again). But a company, then known as Impossible Project, claimed it would do, well, the impossible. It would bring Polaroid back. Now, the company is renaming itself Polaroid and giving us a new camera—the $99 Polaroid now. It has an autofocus lens and a double exposure feature, but beyond that, you’ll find everything that made Polaroid cameras great. And bad.
Decades ago, the promise of Polaroid was simple—instant pictures. That seems quaint now, but at the time, you had to take photos on film cameras, take that film to the store, and get your pictures printed. That could take days, or longer. Only after the wait would you find out someone blinked, or you cut off someone else’s head.
The idea of getting a picture right now was amazing. Even if those photos were kind of terrible. Now we have cameras attached to our phones, and we can see results instantly. So Polaroid died because it felt unnecessary.
But all things old can be new again, especially when nostalgia plays a factor in purchasing decisions. The Polaroid Now is a distinct play on nostalgia.
If you ever owned a Polaroid camera, you’d recognize this one as “the real deal” instantly. It looks right, feels right, and even works correctly. That includes using an instant film based on the original Polaroid film.
It does have a few new features, including an autofocus camera and a double-exposure effect. But beyond that, it’s a Polaroid camera.
The Verge already has a review out, and it doesn’t paint a pretty picture (no pun intended). It seems the photos the Polaroid Now produced are sometimes out of focus, the film can produce unsatisfactory results, and what you get isn’t up to snuff compared to your camera phone.
But that just sounds like an accurate recreation of a Polaroid camera to us. You know what you’re getting into if you buy one. And you can buy one, starting today at Polaroid’s site. It’s available in black and white, and for a limited time, you can also get it in orange, yellow, red, green, and blue.