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Postcardly turns digital pics into real postcards

Return to the glory days of the mail service with Postcardly. It takes digital pictures and e-mail messages, turns them into real-world postcards, and pops them into the mail.

Amanda Kooser
Freelance writer Amanda C. Kooser covers gadgets and tech news with a twist for CNET. When not wallowing in weird gear and iPad apps for cats, she can be found tinkering with her 1956 DeSoto.
Amanda Kooser
2 min read
Postcardly postcard preview
Here's what a Postcardly preview looks like. Wish you were here. (Click to enlarge.) Screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET

Remember the United States Postal Service? Those people who dress up in blue and visit your house nearly every day? They're feeling a little lonely with the growing domination of e-mail and Facebook. You can brighten up their day a little by reviving the lost art of postcards.

The newly launched Postcardly service bridges the gap between your digital snapshots and the real world by turning your pics into actual postcards that will make your grandmother happy and answer your 12-year-old's question: "Mommy, what's a postcard?"

The concept is elegantly simple. You set up an account, enter your recipient's mailing information, and create a Postcardly e-mail account for that person. Send an e-mail to the account with a short message and a picture attached. Postcardly prints it out and pops it in the mail for you. No stamps required, and no hunting down a mailbox in the middle of Rome.

Postcardly might not be able to fully replace the classic postcards of giant jackalopes in Texas, but it's a lot easier to deal with and you get to choose your own images. The service costs $4.99 per month for 5 postcards or $9.99 for 15. Test it out with the free three-postcard trial.

The subscription cost goes down a little easier when you discover that you can share your account. This comes just in time for family summer vacation season. You can send a postcard of the palms swaying on the beach to your mother while the kids send screenshots of their Farmville high scores to their buddies. Everybody wins.