Sony Digital Paper device to arrive in May, targeting paper intensive businesses, organisations and universities
Sony says its 13.3-inch Digital Paper device will help businesses and higher education institutions avoid the hassle and expense of printing in paper-intensive environments, so long as they have $1,100 (£661) to spend on the device when it launches in May.
Digital Paper boasts an electronic paper display (EPD) capable of displaying 1200 x 1600 using E-Ink, the same technology employed by e-readers such as the Amazon Kindle.
Sony says this large display means documents can be shown in the same size as if they were printed on paper, removing the need to zoom or scroll documents.
Sony Digital Paper
Pages are turned by touching the screen, with a touch panel used to operate the menu, while users can annotate, highlight and erase text using a stylus. The device can display PDF files, and can convert Microsoft Word and Excel files, that can either be stored on its 4GB of internal storage or on a Micro SD card and transferred either from a USB connection or Wi-Fi.
Sony says Digital Paper is the lightest and thinnest device among devices with a similar size screen and is only slightly thicker than 30 sheets of paper.
The Japanese manufacturer says businesses, educational institutions and government agencies will be able to eliminate the process of printing, copying, sharing, transporting and discarding documents and has announced its intention to target the legal industry before looking at other sectors.
“This is a true replacement for the vast amounts of paper that continue to clutter many offices and institutions,” said Bob Nell, director, Digital Paper Solutions of Sony Electronics. “It is very easy to use and optimized for reading and annotating contracts, white papers, scholarly articles and legislation.
“The ‘notepad’ feature will have universal appeal, and notes can be shared with clients, colleagues, and co-workers. Digital Paper offers a simple, intuitive experience and gives professionals portability and flexibility coupled with the ability to wirelessly access document management solutions and other content repositories.”
While the hefty price tag and the embodied energy of the Sony Digital Paper device is unlikely to reduce the monetary and environmental cost of printing, E-signature firms such as Docusign are also hoping to reduce the complexities of paperwork by allowing documents to be signed in real-time over the web.
However traditional printing firms are also aiming to reduce their environmental impact. Last week, Epson announced the Workforce Pro, a new printer that can print 75,000 pages from one replaceable bag of ink, at low cost and using less energy.
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