King Jim, an office stationary supply company based in Japan, just celebrated the 10-year anniversary of its first Pomera digital typewriter model. Since 2008, the device has provided a lightweight and convenient alternative to laptops for Japanese writers and business people on the go. In part to commemorate the anniversary and in part to address customer feedback about the back-lit LCD screen’s brightness level causing eye strain, King Jim decided to look into ePaper. That decision led to E Ink (the commercial leader in ePaper tech), a collaborative new Pomera typewriter model and plans for King Jim’s first real foray into the U.S. market.
Digital Signage Connection caught up with E Ink’s Chief Strategy Officer Paul Apen to discuss the partnership and the redesigned Pomera DM30, which boasts longer battery life, a foldable keyboard and a 6-inch E Ink ePaper display that makes use of bi-stable electronic ink.
“This product is designed to emulate the experience of an actual typewriter,” said Apen. “You can open the shades in your office and let in the natural light while working or create content outside on your patio with a coffee. Traditional LCDs are hard to view in sunlight, and produce an unnatural, emissive glow in dimly lit environments. Similar to long-format reading, while writing, a user will potentially spend considerable time staring and focusing on a display. A paper-like feel is a more natural experience.”
And ‘experience’ is the key word here as it is increasingly across verticals for the digital communications industry as a whole. Although the Pomera DM30 can’t stop a customer in their tracks with eye-popping color visuals, the use case and the corresponding experience is more about having a hassle-free word processor that, unlike smartphones and other devices, doesn’t get inundated with distracting notifications.
“Although we are now living in the digital age of personal computers, there are a number of people who prefer a simple, dedicated device for text input only,” said Apen. “These users are creating long, text-based documents such as memorandums and novels, and they don’t like the long boot-up time of personal computers when moving between locations. For these users, tablets and phones do not have a mechanical keyboard suitable for their needs. The Pomera turns on instantly and allows the user to input text immediately, without opening an app or program.”
The Pomera DM30 keyboard features a horizontal pitch of 17 mm and a vertical pitch of 15.5 mm. For more product specs and press release information, click here.