The one thing I don’t particularly like about the Instax 12 is the look. The body is in the same vein as the Mini 11, with a kind of Bob Ross, fluffy cloud vibe to both the shape and range of available colors. It’s fun and playful and I can see why Fuji uses it—turning the camera into a friendly, approachable object. It screams This is easy and fun! For those like me, wanting something more, well, camera-like, there’s always the Instax Mini 40. Or if you feel like splurging, the Mini 90. See our guide to instant cameras for more.
To go along with the Mini 12, Fujifilm has released a new free app called Instax Up. The key function is that it will “scan” (um, photograph) your Instax prints, allowing you to store and share them online. If you have photos in any other Instax apps, you can import them to Instax Up so everything is in one place.
Once an image is in the app you can edit it with a few simple controls, add notes, and even geotag it using a map. If you amass a sizable collection of scans, you can filter and search by Instax film type, date scanned, or any tags you’ve added. You can also share the image with any other app on your phone.
So yes, now you can post even your Instax selfies on Instagram. So much for the tangible. I get it, I get it. I am old and curmudgeonly. Fujifilm no doubt has a boatload of market research to prove the intelligence of this move. I, personally, deleted the app as soon as I had proved to myself that it worked as advertised.
In my world, Instax prints are something you stick on the wall, with tape. And they stay there until the sun bleaches those moments back to nothing, leaving only the cool darkness of evening and those moments we etched in our minds. Whatever the case, the Mini 12 is the cheapest, easiest way to enter the Instax world and it remains my top pick for anyone who wants a dead simple, affordable, and incredibly fun instant camera.