Torsten Curdt’s weblog

iPhoto picture book

stripesSo last christmas I gave it a try and ordered a picture book dirctly at Apple through iPhoto. There are many businesses offering the same kind of service at a much lower price …but what the heck! …it’s so convenient from iPhoto and I just wanted to give it a try.

Designing the book was quite easy. You create a new book, pick a design and cover type and then you can just drag the pictures onto the pages from you library. But there are quite a few annoyances.

  • After a while I changed my mind and instead of a hard cover I wanted to get it as soft cover. Sorry, can’t change it! (At least I could not find how) You would have to create a new book and start from scratch. Too much work – so I left it as a hard cover.
  • The designs are pretty strict. If you have more to write than what fits into the text boxes you are screwed. No way of altering individual pages. No way of adding additional text to it.
  • Anyway after a while the book was finished and iPhoto took my personal information and uploaded everything to Apple. I would have expected they have someone to print them somewhere more local but instead I had to pay big bucks to get it shipped from the US.

cuttingWhen it arrived the packaging was Apple like in a cool white-grey box. Nice! But when I looked at the book I was a little disappointed. The front picture was just glued onto the cover. Not looking very professional. Then I opened it. Printing stripes! Noticeable especially on the black pages. Quite terrible already but even worse – they did not cut the pages correctly. And what no one told me before – the last page (on the inside of the cover) there is an Apple logo and it says “Done with a Mac”. Sorry, but I am not paying around 50 EUR plus a shipping of around 10 EUR and then have advertisement on the last page.

Convenient or not – again Apple failed to deliver. The sad point is that this is becoming increasingly common these days.

  • @Elton: Maybe I just didn't find it or the option was there in that older version of iPhoto. But I can confirm you can remove the logo in iPhoto '08.
  • Elton Hickman

    Just wanted to say that one does have the option of removing the apple logo 'Done with a mac' on the inside of the back cover. I chose to remove it:)

  • As I noted in my email ... I had two books printed by Apple which turned out perfectly -- no problems at all, and the images all looked great.

    The third book had some residue on two of the pages (dried ink?), which wasn't so good. So I write to Apple Support (http://www.apple.com/support ... ) at 7:30am this morning and explained the problem in once sentence, offering to send photos. at 10:30am they replied: my money was refunded; and they'd verified that the black stuff wasn't really part of the images... so if I wanted, I could have the book reprinted (I'd have to pay, of course). But - no questions asked, and they didn't ask for photos, or the return of the book.

    So ... if you haven't, you should contact Apple about getting a refund; I'm not sure if it's too late or not.

    Also, I use Aperture. Youl have more (= complete) control of photo layout, size, text, etc, and you don't specify hard or soft cover until you're ready to buy it.

    The other services I've checked have apps which are as equally restrictive as iPhoto: myPublisher and Blurb both give a standard set of page options, without the ability to move photos around, or add more textboxes or whatnot. It's not just Apple :)

    You might want to try http://www.mypublisher.eu.com/.... Not sure if you'll have any better luck with them, or if they're any faster. If you do use them, you'll need jpegs exported at 180dpi or so (assuming they have the same requirements as the US company)

    good luck.
  • Pablo Villalba

    this could probably be an alternative to the Print Services that are bound to iPhoto:


    I bought some greeting cards via iPhoto and was rather pleased of the quality but the time it took to get them to Germany seemed like forever(18 days).

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