A Mini Robotic Printer

As you can tell from our last blog post, 3D printers are all the rage right now! But what about other kinds of printers? Surely the only developments aren't happening with 3D printing. Enter the Mini Mobile Robotic Printer. Measuring only 3.9 by 4.5 inches, this printer allows you to print on-the-go, without the usual limitations of desktop printing. Better yet: it's just 11,000 dollars away from its 400,000 dollar goal on Kickstarter, meaning the printers will ship by January 2015.

taken from: Kickstarter

Looking Inside This Printer

As you can imagine, it takes a lot to get a miniature robot working properly! Thankfully a talented team of experts is handling all of the little hiccups along the way. The project itself came out of a challenge at the Jerusalem College of Technology, in the Friedberg Entrepreneurship Program. Students created a printer prototype using robotics software and have now asked for funding in order to produce working consumer models.

What's so unique about the Mini Robotic Printer is that the inkjet is built directly into the mini machine. By simply opening a flap, the printing mechanism is revealed. In order to ensure accurate printing, wireless and Bluetooth technology have been included in the unit, along with a series of omniwheels, which allow the printer to make small motions required to avoid blurry text. Given the small size, the battery was a challenge. Presently, it is expected the printer lasts for 1 hour of continuous printing, or roughly 72 pages.

taken from: Kickstarter

Who Will Use It?

So far, there have been 2,318 backers of the project, including nearly 2,000 orders for printers. In the larger scale of the printing industry, this might not seem like a lot, but remember that people are spending anywhere from $180 to $300 on these models when it's easy to find multifunction printers with much higher printing speeds and output quality for the same price. Does this mean the Mini Mobile Robotic Printer is just a novelty item? We would caution against that assumption.

While it's true the printer has limited functionality, it's also true that the emphasis on the mobile nature of our lives could have sticking value. Imagine if you're planning a long-term vacation and know you might need to print out important documents while you're away. Imagine if you only printer every so often and don't want a bulky printer taking up (nonexistent) office space. Imagine if your company has gone paperless but is working with some contractors that haven't gone green yet. And these are just a few possibilities we thought up while brainstorming.

All of this is to say, it's easy to dismiss a technology that seems incomplete, but we also have to remember just how far other desktop printing has come. If interest continues to build like it has for the Mini Mobile Robotic Printer, who knows what other printing advancements could emerge!

taken from: Kickstarter


So, would you be interested in buying a Mini Mobile Robotic Printer? Is there too much hype surrounding the project or is it the new face of desktop printing? Feel free to share your comments below or offer any other ideas for making printing better in your life.

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