Does Amazon print photos? Amazon will sell you almost anything, and photo prints are no exception. Though online photo printing may not be a top money-maker for the retail behemoth, it offers a well-rounded service with plenty of options in the form of Amazon Prints.
The image quality of prints is decent and has improved since we last reviewed this service, as has the site’s interface, though it could still be better. If you’re an Amazon Prime member, you get free delivery (if not, delivery is expensive). Packaging has also improved, but in general, you’re better off with one of our Editors’ Choice winners: Nations Photo Lab for the best quality, Walgreens Photo for same-day local pickup, or Walmart Photo for value.
Does Amazon print photos?
In 1994, Jeff Bezos left his corporate job with the vision of taking part in the internet boom. He founded a company that he hoped would become the largest online bookseller in the world in the garage of his rented home in Seattle. From those humble beginnings, Amazon exceeded Bezos’s expectations.
Today, the company has disrupted the long-standing business model used by brick-and-mortar retailers to become an online powerhouse. A focus on swift delivery, excellent service, and great deals have made Amazon an enduring force and online shopping destination. Amazon Photos is just one of the site’s many popular offerings.
How Much Do Photos From Amazon Prints Cost?
As with most online photo printing services, the prices for photo prints from Amazon have risen since our last review but are still very competitive. Glossy or matte 4-by-6 (or 4-by-5.3) prints start at a reasonable 17 cents each. Prints at the 5-by-7-inch size cost just 69 cents each, and 8-by-10s cost $2.09.
Snapfish undercuts Amazon at all of these common print sizes. In fact, Snapchat has the cheapest 4-by-6 prints (9 cents). Mpix has the most expensive 4-by-6s, at 36 cents apiece, unless you need one-hour local pickup from Walgreens (37 cents) or CVS Photo (39 cents). For the cheapest local pickup, you’re best off going to Walmart Photo (14 cents per 4-by-6).
It’s likely you already have an Amazon account, and that’s all you need to get started with ordering photo prints from Amazon. As a refresher, you just need an email address or phone number—which the service verifies—and a password. You don’t need to enter payment info until you’re ready to make a purchase.
Gifts and Cards From Amazon Prints
As you might expect from the “everything store,” Amazon goes beyond mere prints with a selection of photo printing projects, but it’s surprisingly limited compared with other services like Shutterfly. You can get your photo put on mugs, wall art, calendars, and photo books, along with a couple of offbeat options like mouse pads and blankets. But competitors offer more, including clothing, puzzles, pet bowls, and even shower curtains graced with your photos.
Amazon offers custom holiday cards emblazoned with your family photos, but the choices are far more limited than with competitors like Walmart Photo, as Amazon only offers flat 5-by-7 cards, priced at 99 cents each. Other providers, such as Nations Photo Lab, offer folding cards, along with premium options like foil printing and linen cardstock. Walmart charges only 67 cents for 5-by-7 flat cards and $1.28 for folding cards.
Uploading Photos to Amazon Prints
To get prints from the online shopping giant, you must use its Amazon Prints service. From any Amazon page, if you navigate to Amazon Photos in the left menu bar, there’s a submenu that has Amazon Prints. Once you select a print size for a photo or a product to print a photo on, the site prompts you to upload your image or select it from Amazon Photos. Amazon Photos gives you 5GB of free online storage, and an Amazon Prime subscription gets you unlimited photo storage and free shipping.
The uploading interface has improved, but it’s still not the most conveniently designed. You can only import and print image files in JPG and PNG formats. Some services, including Nations Photo Lab and Printique (formerly AdoramaPix), also support TIFF files, which result in photos with more detail, as well as the now common HEIC format.
It irks me when photo printing services still don’t support HEIC/HEIF since it saves you half the storage space on your smartphone and has been used by phones for several years. Amazon Photos help says it does accept HEIC, but whenever I tried uploading that type of file to a print job, it resulted in an error.
There’s no drag-and-drop photo adding, nor can you directly upload from Facebook or Instagram, as you can with some other services, including Printique and Snapfish. Interestingly, uploading a 108-megapixel shot from a Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra to the print service didn’t work, but the same shot that was already uploaded to my Amazon Photos account worked fine. The same thing happens with raw camera formats.
Once you’ve selected or uploaded your photos, you can change the number of prints you want, and a Review page shows you if and where any of your images are being cut off due to the selected photo print dimensions.
You don’t get any more choices until you click the Edit button. The site suggests to you a Best fit print size to avoid or minimize cropping. Unlike other online photo printing services that offer a convenient single page for adding sizes to all photos in order, Amazon Prints only does one image at a time, and it doesn’t show you all the possible sizes.
Unlike some photo printing services, Amazon doesn’t offer any professional photo retouching, much less image optimizations, filters, or effects, as Mpix and Nations Photo Lab do. You can zoom an image to crop the print, but you can’t zoom out to add empty space for a photo that’s been cropped by the size you chose.
What’s more, there are no image editing tools aside from the zoom crop. Several competitors include online tools for adjusting a photo’s lighting and color, and some even offer special effects. But with more powerful editing software, you can do interesting things like removing and changing the background of your photo.
There are no wallet-size options. One option Amazon Prints does offer is Pearl Prints. According to the site, Pearl Prints have “a unique, high-gloss, reflective quality that’s almost iridescent, thanks to mica crystals embedded in the paper itself.”
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