We are super grateful for all our customers, team members and partners who made this a great year for Simple Booth. We took a lot of GIFs. We had a lot of laughs. We grew our little startup into something a little bit bigger, with plenty further to reach. Here are our top 10 happenings from 2017.
Our platform grew like crazy
Our users got active this year and captured a lot of awesome memories. Simple Booth's platform started the year with 750,000 unique layouts and GIFs uploaded and finished with over four million. Our developers worked tirelessly to keep our cloud game strong, events running smoothly and loading photos fast. New Years Eve was the single biggest day of the year, seeing over 50,000 new uploads in one night with a peak rate of 3 new uploads per second.
A whole new industry emerged
What do orthodontists, ride-sharing apps, electricians, mortgage companies, beauty retailers, wineries, liquor brands, churches and libraries have in common? They all found value in creating unique photo experiences in 2017. And that's just the tip of the iceberg - photo booths aren't just for weddings and events anymore. Demand for modern photo booths really started to rev up in 2017 across multiple sectors, with user-generated content, word-of-mouth and experiential marketing as major driving forces. People in a wide variety of industries are discovering the value of creating fun, prepared photo experiences for their guests - even in places you might not expect.
Our team multiplied
Simple Booth welcomed 9 new team members in 2017, doubling our crew. Two thirds came from our acquisition of MYEVENTISTHEBOMB (MEITB), a boutique photo experience agency started by Simple Booth Co-founder, Jeremy Cox. MEITB has always used Simple Booth products for events. With a team in the field and a team in the lab, we stayed close to the end-user experience and made sure we were building the right features for the right people.
We launched an iPhone app
In August we unveiled the Simple Booth native iPhone app, and along with it our grand plan to make photo booths a more connected experience. For the first time, party-goers have a place for all their photo strips and GIFs to live and can browse to find fun events happening nearby.
We cut steel
The skeptics told us not to start a hardware business because of inventory and logistical constraints. We proved them wrong. In 2017 we shipped over 500 HALOs to customers in 20 different countries. We scored patents on both design and utility of Simple Booth HALO®. Our in-house product team came together in an exciting way and moved the design, engineering and supply chain forward. Now we've never been more excited about the potential for converged software, hardware, digital and real life experiences in the photo technology space.
Subscriptions grew up
It's hard to believe that at the beginning of 2017 we only offered a single subscription plan. Simple Booth was just a baby! Since then we launched new tiers including Starter, Lite, Standard and Premium plans. We also rolled out volume license discounts and sweetened the deal on annual plans to a whopping 33%. The new options brought a flood of new customers and opened the door to creative new ways to use Simple Booth.
We shipped features
In the spring we introduced a new Gallery HTML 5 web app that re-imagined the gallery and digital sharing experience. Then we launched LiveFeed, Green Screen, advanced data capture, moderation tools and free seasonal themes.
Our wordsmiths worked overtime
After long sessions on the state of social media, what we've built and what we want to build next, we landed on a very simple mission statement. Putting your purpose in writing is a big deal for any business, especially a young startup. So here it goes. Simple Booth exists "to help people capture social experiences with products that are fun and easy to use." Hope you dig it as much as we do.
iPads, let's talk about iPads
Just two years ago, the old-guarde photo booth rental folks didn't believe iPads would ever replace DSLR photo booths. Such talk is now all but unheard of. iPad-based photo solutions have proliferated and for good reason. In 2017, Apple increased the front-facing camera resolution on iPad Pro to 7 MP. They lowered the cost of entry for a full-size iPad to $329 and updated the 12.9" form factor with new features. Theres little lingering doubt that tablets are the future of photo booths, and we're leading the wave.
We laid a new architectural foundation
Under the hood, we migrated our entire iOS codebase from Objective C to Swift. On the web, we adopted new standards and best practices and swapped frameworks. Next year the hard work will pay off, Simple Booth will be more agile and releasing features faster than ever.
So what about next year?
I can tell you that 2018 will be an incredible year for experiential photo tech. We've been busy behind the scenes on big projects that will come to fruition in the first half of 2018. Stay tuned and follow us on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook for the latest news and product announcements.