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Kodak’s Mobile Film Scanner Takes Ancient Family History From the Shoebox to the Cloud Instantly

Spy Finds is a daily series that unveils the coolest, under-the-radar products that you haven’t heard of until now. Each product is curated by our editors who want to help you discover cool finds you didn’t know you needed.

Here’s a plausible scenario for you: Great-Aunt Mildred has shuffled off this mortal coil — may she rest in peace — and you and the rest of the fam are going through her musty old attic or basement to see what’s worth keeping. You find boxes — many, many boxes — of old photo negatives and film slides. Because those were a thing once.

You can only stand there so long, holding each one up to the light and closing one eye to try to make out exactly who the heck is in these ancient pics. Could be nobody. Could be Holy crap Great-Aunt Mildred knew Frank Sinatra! But good luck finding a slide projector to go through these relics.

Thankfully, Kodak has a fantastic, inexpensive, easy-to-use mobile film scanner. Before you toss out those musty old boxes of slides and negatives (which are probably captured on Kodak film to begin with), consider the benefits of this cheap little gadget. The Kodak Mobile Film Scanner looks small and unimposing, but once those old family pictures are resurrected on your phone with next to no effort, it’ll be your favorite purchase in ages.

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Courtesy of Amazon Courtesy of Amazon
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Courtesy of Amazon

It’s hardly an intimidating device compared to the USB-reliant monster scanners and their complicated proprietary software that you normally associate with digitizing old photos. Which is good, because who has the time, money or patience for that? The Kodak Mobile Film Scanner is a heavyweight cardboard box, and it folds down to virtually nothing when it’s time to stash it away. It’s actually pocket-sized. Open, scan, save, stash. No software, no cords, no chunk out of your wallet beyond the insanely reasonable $39.99 to buy it from Amazon. For just $40, this little film scanner lets you become your family’s unofficial historian.

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The built-in LED backlight illuminates your 35mm slides or negatives. The dedicated (and free) Kodak Mobile Film Scanner app does the rest. Once the photos are scanned onto your mobile device, you can crop, rotate and adjust as needed. Share your newly rediscovered family gems on social media, or just with the fam via group text or email. Your Throwback Thursdays for the rest of your life are now set.