WiFi Photo Frame Meural
The Netgear Meural Canvas II was more than a digital photo frame with its innovative matt-finish frame: it was a canvas for displaying high-end works of art (supplied by subscription) in a realistic fashion. However, because of the high prices and membership requirements, it was not for everyone.
The Netgear Meural WiFi Photo Frame ($299) marks the company’s return to a smaller, less expensive display.
It has the same high-definition display technology, and you can still subscribe for expert artwork, but this model is primarily designed to showcase your personal photo collection.
Continue reading to see if the Meural WiFi Photo Frame is right for you…
Design and Specifications of the Meural WiFi Photo Frame
The Meural WiFi Photo Frame is essentially a 15.6-inch screen with a nicer-looking surround, as are other photo frames.
A grey border with a wood-effect veneer runs around the outside in this example. It’s intriguing enough just to make a product look like a decent picture frame without being too obvious.
Netgear has chosen an IPS LCD display with a Full HD resolution once again. That may not sound like a lot of resolution, but the goal is to portray images in a natural way, with anti-glare technology that enables the screen to be viewed in any light.
There’s a quad-core 1.8GHz ARM processor inside, as well as 8GB of storage, with 4GB reserved for photos. That may not seem like a lot, but thanks to some cunning app optimization, 4GB isn’t the limit it appears to be.
The Photo Frame is intended to be more flexible than the original Canvas, which was designed to be wall-mounted. A fold-out stand in the back allows you to use the camera in landscape or portrait mode.
There’s a mount in the box and an L-shaped bracket on the back of the Photo Frame if you wish to hang it on the wall.
You can quickly remove the display from the wall and switch it between portrait and landscape positions thanks to the bracket. The revolving wall mount for the Canvas is a little nicer, but it’s a bit pricey, so the more basic hanger here is wonderful to have.
All you have to do now is connect the screen to the power supply with the converter included in the package. Then, after the Meural WiFi Photo Frame is turned on, you can use the app to connect it to your home network and begin streaming photos to it.
App and Features of the Netgear Meural WiFi Photo Frame
The Meural app, which offers you everything you need to manage your images and device, is used to control your Photo Frame. To view images, you must first upload them to your cloud storage account.
Everybody gets 2GB of cloud storage, but if you sign up for a subscription, you receive 20GB of cloud storage as well as access to thousands of pieces of art (more on that later).
Images can be obtained in a variety of ways on the internet. If you utilise my.meural.com, you can first upload photographs from your phone or directly from your PC.
Second, you can connect an Album directly from your phone, and any new photographs added to it will be automatically uploaded to your Meural. You can create an ever-evolving collection of images, which is very useful for things like family photos.
Because images are downsized and formatted to fit the display, you won’t use up as much storage as you think.
Once you’ve gathered your images, you may either play an album or a single shot on your Canvas or create a Playlist to combine photos from various playlists. You can also bring in professional works of art.
Because photos are posted to the Photo Frame when memory is available, three or four playlists can usually be stored locally.
Some images must be erased from local memory and stored in the cloud if you switch and add another playlist. But it’s all quite smooth, and the 4GB of storage seems to go a long way.
Furthermore, if your internet goes down, the Photo Frame will continue to display any photographs stored in its memory, ensuring that you never have to gaze at a blank screen or, worse, an error message.
A Meural subscription ($69.99 per year) gives you access to thousands of images, ranging from classic works of art to brand-new shots, just like the Canvas.
You can also broaden your options by purchasing additional premium content packs. It’s creative, and the selection is remarkable, but the costs are expensive.
A subscription isn’t required here, unlike with Canvas, because you’re much more likely to be displaying your own photos.
You may skip through your photos using the app, but you also have a lot of flexibility over how they’re displayed. You can tell your Photo Frame not to show photos in the wrong orientation, so you’ll see different photos based on which way it’s turned.
You can change and also have various photo playlists at various times of the day by scheduling when they should be shown.
You can also specify how photos should be resized to match the 16:9 screen. When the ambient light isn’t intense enough, you can turn off the screen to save power.
When switched on, the display uses only 20 watts (the same as a couple of bright LED bulbs), so it won’t cost you much over the course of a year, especially if you turn it off at night.
There’s an Amazon Alexa Skill (but no Google Assistant compatibility) that lets you skip photos and switch the display on or off if you want.
The Photo Frame, like the Canvas, has gesture controls. The idea is that you slide your palm across the right portion of the frame to choose between photographs, examine more information (which is very handy on professional artwork because you get a whole explanation), and browse through the menu.
Whether or not the frame responds to movement is, once again, a hit-or-miss situation. I’ve stood in front of the Photo Frame several times, flailing my hands wildly, but nothing happens.
Performance of the Netgear Meural WiFi Photo Frame
The Photo Frame employs Meural’s anti-glare technology, which is highly amazing. While much of the competition simply shoves a simple display into a frame, the Photo Frame uses Meural’s anti-glare technology, which is hugely impressive. Even when exposed to direct sunshine, this display remains clear.
More importantly, the polish improves the appearance of the screen. Rather than looking like a TV, the Photo Frame’s anti-glare coating gives photos the appearance of being printed on high-end photo paper.
In fact, if the power line is tucked out of the way, I’m willing to wager that most people won’t even notice there’s a screen here.
They look fantastic if you have a good camera (or even good smartphone photos). The Netgear Meural WiFi Photo Frame has rich colours and loads of detail, making it potentially better than even pricey photo printouts.
The viewing angles on this model aren’t quite as good as they are on the Canvas. When you stray too far from the centre, especially in portrait mode, the on-screen image becomes much darker. You can get around the problem by carefully positioning the screen, but the Canvas is slightly superior.
Because the screen technology isn’t perfect for video, a competitor product like a Nixplay photo frame may be a better choice if you want to show off family footage.
WiFi Photo Frame Meural
The Netgear Meural WiFi Photo Frame is a terrific way to show off your digital photos, freeing them from your smartphone and computer. It’s smaller, cheaper, and more flexible than Canvas. The image quality is incredible, making your photos appear as if they were printed on high-grade paper. The Photo Frame is, however, still very expensive for a digital photo frame, so it’s best suited to those with a decent camera and some high-quality photos to display.
- Image quality is excellent.
- It may be seen in any lighting situation.
- Placement possibilities that are flexible
- Viewing angles are rather restricted.
- Expensive in comparison
- Motion controls are a waste of time.