Sincerely Launches Postagram: Turns Instagram Photos Into Real Postcards

No, it’s not a mobile game. But it is a consumer-facing app launching with an actual business model (rare as those are these days).

Sincerely, a San Francisco-based startup from Xobni co-founder Matt Brezina, is launching a first warm-up project today off the back of the Instagram API. Called Postagram, the app — like its name implies — lets you turn any of your old Instagram photos into real postcards that you can mail to yourself, family or friends.

They can be sent directly from the iPhone and they can be delivered anywhere in the world for 99 cents. For the first 24 hours though, every user gets to send one for free in a launch special. They take between two and five days to send in the U.S. and they come on a die-cut card where the photo can be popped out. Users can also type in a short 140-character message to come with the photo.

Sincerely’s banking on printable objects: they’re the cheapest physical goods to produce and deliver. And with mobile phones emerging as the social point-and-shoot camera of choice, there are millions of potential customers who might want to have a photo or two printed at some point. An app is going to be easier than physically heading into the local grocery or drug store for ordering and pick-up. And consumers might not want a stack of 24 or 36 photos like they get with a roll of film — they might just want one particularly, memorable photo to send as a memento to a friend.

The company’s taking a web- and mobile-approach to this project with an app for people to send orders directly from their phone and a web-based gallery where they can pick and choose from their entire Instagram collection.

Sincerely is one of few non-gaming apps that we’ve seen come out of the gate with a business model. Most venture-backed apps tend to bet that they will acquire users and scale, get network effects and figure it out later.