Flickr, the once Yahoo-owned photo-sharing site that’s now a part of Verizon*, is getting out of the photo book printing business, and is shutting down the feature that allowed users to turn photos into professional-quality wall art. In an email sent to users this week, Flickr said that it was turning over photo books to publishing service Blurb as of October 16, 2017, but the wall art service was simply being terminated.
An older internet brand, Flickr over the years has suffered from a lack of attention and resources, while other companies began stepping up their efforts in the photo-hosting and photo-sharing space, including Facebook, Google, Apple, and Amazon, among others.
But under Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, there was a renewed investment in Flickr, following the acquisition of several companies, including Ghostbird, IQ Engines and LookFlow, aimed at improving Flickr’s software and its image recognition smarts, among other things.
In 2013, Flickr announced the introduction of photo books as a native feature of its platform – you could just hover over a Flickr set to generate your book. Before, Flickr had allowed third-party sites to enable photo book creation using its photos, but this effort was the first time Flickr had created its own in-house tool for the process.
The following year, Flickr expanded on its photo book offering to allow users to turn personal photos into wall art. Shortly after, it opened this up to pro photographers, too, so they could sell their photography as wall art to other Flickr users, making Flickr more competitive with sites like 500px, for example. Read more