Workforce on the move will be happy to learn about Scribor, a wireless interactive touch-screen designed by Ideo in London and launched last month at the Cebit technology show.
A slim, near A4-sized Remote Access Pad, it can work for up to nine hours away from a standard PC, even if it is 300m away. It is connected via a transceiver radio link that allows it to receive or transmit information to and from the PC.
Scribor can surf the Internet, use e-mail and take instructions for printing. It uses touch screen technology, either with a finger or with the Stylus, a sleek pen in aluminium with a plastic moulding. ‘Intuitive behaviour, mobility, lightness and an affordable price give the Scribor huge advantages over other portable computer products,’ says Ideo project leader Marc Tanner.
Scribor weighs only 1.4kg, with a 12in screen framed by grey stripes of moulded plastic and rubber. It’s easy to handle and impressive in presentations, providing maximum information and optimum mobility. An extruded aluminium stand is also provided to allow the unit to be positioned upright on a desk. But the stand has not been integrated into the design to encourage a break away from the traditional desktop set up.
The ergonomic issues were resolved by positioning the battery pack towards one edge. The software allows the unit to be rotated 180 degrees, so the bulky edge can be positioned either at the top for tilt when it is resting on a tabletop, or at the bottom when the user has Scribor in their lap.
This is the first product to be produced by Scribor, a German start-up which also owns the technology to use it, appropriately named mobile user interface. ‘The aim behind Scribor is the seamless integration of information into the consumer’s life,’ explains Hans Wolfgang Katte, Scribor’s marketing director. ‘There is no direct competitor on the market. Web pads have a similar design, but only serve as a gateway to the Internet by means of having built-in processors and browers. Scribor is practically the remote control of your PC.’
Ideo project leaders: Marc Tanner and Suzy Stone; Industrial design: Marc Tanner and Robin Sarre; Mechanical engineering: Suzy Stone and Max Bielenberg; Price around £1100. See website for details www.scribor.com