A small printer addresses a problem largely ignored in the mobile revolution: Where can I print?
Few printers have fallen into the ‘sexy’ category in recent years, especially as printing on paper has increasingly gone out of fashion. However, no matter how much we wish our lives could be completely paperless, paper documents will probably continue to be a part of our lives for some time.
The Mini Mobile Robotic Printer, which was designed by Zuta Labs and will be collecting its $400,000 in production costs over Kickstarter, is unique in that it isn’t constrained by the size of the paper on which it’s printing. Instead, it has a Roomba-like design in which it scurries over the paper, leaving your text printed in its wake.
The printer operates via Bluetooth and works with Windows, OS X, Linux, iOS, Android and Windows Phone, making it ideal for printing jobs when you don’t have a laptop with you. At 1.2 pages per minute, it’s a bit slow compared to your typical machine, but weighing in at only 300g and measuring 10 x 11 cm, it makes up for that with convenience. The printer will print in monochrome and uses a tiny inkjet with cartridges that last for 1,000 pages.
The idea behind the Mini Mobile is ingenious, and makes you realize what happens when you step back from everyday assumptions, like the one that all printers need a big plastic housing. “Print machines today are essentially a printhead running left and right on a moving piece of paper,” reads the developer’s Kickstarter page. “We asked ourselves, why not get rid of the entire device, just put the printhead on a set of small wheels and let it run across a piece of paper. By doing so, we allow the printer to really be as little as possible.”
Word has spread about the little printer and it now has backing and interest beyond crowdfunding, including accelerators and tech giants as large as Microsoft. Most recently, on April 7th, the Mini Mobile was presented at the ThinkNext innovation event in Israel.
“Once we will finish the campaign we will be sure to leverage the best of our resources, offers, and opportunities in order to deliver the best product to our potential customers,” Zuta Labs wrote. See it in action below: