Last year, Epson’s PictureMate personal photo lab was a top choice among gift givers looking for the perfect digital camera companion for their friends and family members. With less than 90 days left to shop for holiday gifts, Epson is giving consumers yet another PictureMate product to choose from — and making the popular line of 4″ x 6″ compact photo printers even more affordable.

The latest addition to the PictureMate product line, Epson’s new PictureMate Express Edition (MSRP $149) has all the benefits of the original PictureMate, plus a faster print speed that allows users to print brilliant, glossy 4″x6″ photos in as little as 80 seconds — 35 percent faster than the original PictureMate. In addition to the introduction of a third PictureMate model, Epson also is reducing the price of its existing PictureMate products. PictureMate and PictureMate Deluxe Viewer Edition are now available for a suggested retail price of $129 and $199, respectively.

“The addition of a third PictureMate model and the price adjustments made to the existing product line give digital camera owners even more options for choosing the best PictureMate personal photo lab for their particular needs,” said Grace Huang, product manager, Epson. “PictureMate and PictureMate Express Edition appeal to consumers looking for a quick, easy and affordable solution for printing brilliant, lab-quality photos in the convenience of home. For those looking for a more feature-rich and portable solution for editing and printing their photos with or without a computer, PictureMate Deluxe Viewer Edition offers greater versatility and convenience for printing what you what, when you want, whenever — and however — you want.”

Designed as the ultimate printing companion for digital camera owners, all three PictureMate models allow users to easily print beautiful, long lasting lab quality photos at home for as little as 24 cents per print — with or without a computer.

Thanks to Epson’s exclusive archival six-color pigment printing technology, PictureMate prints not only match the look and feel of traditional lab prints, they also are the gold standard for superior photo longevity, including a water- and smudge-resistance that is not available with most other 4″ x 6″ ink jet photo printers, and a fade resistance that is as much as two to four times longer than traditional film-processed photos and up to 25 times longer than photos from other dedicated snapshot printers. PictureMate photos are rated to resist fading up to 104 years in a glass frame and about 200 years in an album.

All three PictureMate printers, which have earned the ENERGY STAR by meeting strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy, are simple and convenient to use. Printing digital images is as easy as inserting any popular memory card or connecting to a PictBridge enabled camera and pressing Print. And, with a variety of editing and printing options, as well as options for backing up photo files directly to a CD-R, Zip or flash drive, PictureMate can be used independently from a computer. The PictureMate products also feature wireless direct printing capabilities via an optional Epson Bluetooth Photo Print Adapter (MSRP $69), allowing owners of Bluetooth-enabled camera cell phones and PDAs to easily print their photos.

For digital camera owners looking for greater versatility and convenience, PictureMate Deluxe Viewer Edition has additional features and benefits, including a built-in premium color photo viewer for previewing and editing images, as well as a wider variety of editing and printing options. These options include Epson’s exclusive Print by Date mode, manual photo adjustments for brightness, sharpness and saturation, unlimited photo cropping capabilities, and 15 fun Disney frames, with popular Disney characters such as Mickey and Friends, the Disney Princesses and Winnie the Pooh — all of which can be easily added to create a colorful and lively border to any photo before printing. With print speeds as fast as 75 seconds and optional internal battery (MSRP $69), PictureMate Deluxe Viewer Edition makes photo printing anytime, anywhere even more convenient.

All three PictureMate products are supported by PictureMate Print Packs, convenient and economical ink and photo paper combo packs. PictureMate Print Packs now come in three versions, including a 270-sheet glossy 4″x6″ photo paper option (MSRP $65.00) with a cost per print of about 24 cents, and a 100-sheet glossy 4″x6″ photo paper option (MSRP $29.00) with a cost per print of about 29 cents. For those who prefer a matte finish, Epson also offers a PictureMate Print Pack, Matte version with 100 sheets of matte 4″x6″ photo paper (MSRP $33.99). Thanks to the PictureMate Print Pack Satisfaction Guarantee, PictureMate owners are assured they will have enough ink to produce prints using all of the photo paper included in their respective Print Pack.