I’ve started thinking more about the idea of a truly portable office recently. Between my phone and my laptop, I ought to be pretty much set to work anywhere.
There’s only one important device I need that I can’t fit into my laptop bag: the printer. As tech gadgets constantly shrink, the printer has remained stuck at a certain size. A printer can’t be smaller than a sheet of paper. Can it?
According to Zuta Labs, a startup founded by graduates of the Jerusalem College of Technology, it can be.
The Mini Mobile Robotic Printer
They’re currently running a campaign on Kickstarter for a mini robotic mobile printer. Watch their pitch video below and check out the campaign page for details, but essentially they’re building a robot with a strong resemblance to a Roomba robotic vacuum.
Printing is controlled by your laptop, tablet, or phone via Bluetooth. The polycarbonate printer comes in black or white, and it has a USB-chargeable battery that should provide an hour of printing time.
You place the printer robot on the top corner of the paper, and it goes back and forth printing, just like the printhead in a normal desktop printer. For multi-page documents, it will pause until you pick it up and set it on the next page.
Unfortunately, printing this way is much slower than a normal laser or even inkjet printer. They advertise a rate of 1.2 pages per minute. That’s painfully slow, but in a pinch, I’m sure it’s better than nothing!
On the bright side, the robot uses standard HP ink, so refills will be easy to find. This initial device is limited to grayscale printing, although I’m sure they eventually want to produce a color model.
The Campaign Video
Again, here’s the link to their Kickstarter campaign if you’re interested. The Kickstarter campaign ends April 29, 2014.