Unfortunately, the Skylight digital frame has annual fees that unlock additional features that aren’t available with the non-premium subscription. There are several features that you won’t have access to after the initial purchase.
Skylight digital frame has a $39 annual fee to unlock Skylight plus. The main feature this unlocks is the ability to send videos to the Skylight digital frame. Sadly, this feature is available for free with most of the Skylight digital frame’s competitors. On Pix-Star’s digital frame, you can send videos to your frame via email or through the mobile app and web interface – this comes at no extra charge.
The Skylight digital frame’s “Plus” annual subscription also gives you access to the cloud backup feature. This automatically backs up all the photos sent to and saved on the frame. It’s a handy feature, but one that’s offered for free on several competing digital frames.
You’ll need the Skylight Plus subscription to unlock additional features in the compatible mobile app. This is an unfortunate drawback as the mobile app is usually one of the most versatile features of a digital frame. For example, with Pix-Star’s frame, the mobile app lets you send multiple photos to multiple frames at the same time. You can record videos/audio and take pictures natively in the app, and send them directly to your frame. These features are limited on the Skylight digital frame without the Plus subscription. You’ll also need the annual subscription for online access through the web interface, where you can manage, share, download, and view your photos.
All-in-all, with the subscription active, the Skylight digital frame competes relatively well with the other top digital frames on the market. Without the Skylight Plus subscription, it struggles to stand up to the competition.
Skylight digital frames feature the same internal storage size that many of the other top digital frames on the market do. They come with 8GB of internal storage. The exact number of photos that the Skylight digital frame can hold varies wildly depending on the average size of the photos sent to the frame.
8GB is enough to hold 30,000 photos with an average size of 300KB per photo. This number then drops for higher resolution and higher quality photos.
One drawback of Skylight frames when compared to frames like the Pix-Star is what happens when storage space runs out. When the Skylight digital frame runs out of storage, the oldest photos will be deleted to make space for newer ones. This could mean you might lose your favorite old photos – especially if you don’t pay for the Skylight Plus subscription. Your photos won’t be automatically backed up to the cloud (without the subscription), leaving you more likely to lose your oldest photos.
As with any product out there, the perfect digital frame doesn’t exist. This is true for both the Pix-Star and the Skylight digital frames. Each one has its strengths and weaknesses, so it’s all about finding which one suits you the best.
In terms of features and functionality, the Pix-Star is the clear winner. The Pix-Star digital frame has one of the most robust and rich feature set on the market – a hard package for any brand to beat. The frame offers lots of customization and control over the frame’s settings, its content, and how it’s displayed. The Skylight digital frame gives you very little control over its settings, even via the mobile app.
Pix-Star offers remote control capability, letting you set the frame up and control it as if you were there in person – but from anywhere in the world.
Another comparison worth making is recurring costs. Skylight digital frames have an annual fee that unlocks additional features for the frame, the mobile app, and the web interface. Without this fee, you won’t have access to cloud backups or the ability to send videos to the frame. Pix-Star’s frame offers all of these features and more; plus they all come unlocked with the original purchase.
In most other aspects such as display and image quality, the two frames are quite even. Both have bright and sharp displays with accurate colors. The Pix-Star digital frame offers more in terms of settings, brightness adjustments, and multimedia playback (free of charge). Pix-Star also has a larger 15” digital frame if you prefer larger and brighter screens.
One other major difference is the aspect ratio. Pix-Star has a 4:3 aspect ratio, whereas Skylight digital frames have a 16:9 aspect ratio. 4:3 aspect ratios are better for viewing photos, and 16:9 is usually better for viewing videos. Unfortunately, you’ll need to subscribe to Skylight Plus if you want to make full use of their 16:9 screen. 4:3 screens are also usually better for portrait orientations, especially if you want to display artwork.
The picture quality on the Skylight frame is good despite a slightly lower resolution (1024×600), and the frame is very simple to use (though very limited at the same time). If you are going to get a Skylight digital frame, you need to get the annual Skylight Plus subscription.
Without the Plus subscription, you will lose out on features like cloud backups, mobile app features, online access, and the ability to send videos to the Skylight digital frame. These are basic functions that are offered for free by competitors like Pix-Star.
The Skylight frame is only worth the money with an active Skylight Plus subscription. That being said, there is an almost total lack of features and customization on the Skylight digital frame. You can’t control slideshow speeds or even adjust the brightness of the screen. There are also other issues related to the frame’s viewing angle.
It’s due to limitations like these that give many of Skylight’s digital frame competitors’ the advantage. With the Skylight Plus subscription, it’s not a bad frame overall – though doesn’t offer you quite the same value that you’d get from a say, Pix-Star frame.
When you buy a Skylight digital frame, you can download and use the mobile app. The Skylight mobile app lets you manage your frame’s content – but with some limitations. You won’t be able to send multiple images at once, send videos, or perform bulk actions. For these functions, you’ll need to subscribe to the Skylight Plus annual subscription.
Other than this drawback, the mobile app is relatively good. It’s moderately easy to use and for sending a picture directly from your phone to the frame – though this is a feature commonly offered by most digital frame’s mobile apps.