Hand Help Scanners Roundup – Xerox Mobile Scanner
Posted in: Tec Blog

Hand Help Scanners Roundup – Xerox Mobile Scanner

$220.99 on amazon.com at time of writing.

Scanners have come a long way in recent years and this wireless hand-held scanner from Xerox demonstrates how far technology has shifted towards convenient, portable devices. Designed for the businessman on the move, this lightweight (22.5 oz) scanner will comfortably slip into a briefcase, and can scan documents up to 8.5″ x 14″ (international A4 sized) via single sheet feeder. What really sets it apart from the competition however, is the inclusion on an Eye-Fi card which doubles as SD storage (4GB) and as a wireless connection.

Xerox Mobile Scanner

This means the scanner can operate totally independently and does not need to be plugged into a computer using USB. Scanned images are sent to the Eye-Fi company servers from where they are sent to your PC or Mac, and can also be posted to Facebook or Flickr etc. for sharing. This transfer process is very convenient, but it does add 40 seconds to the scanning time which is a bit of a chore. Xerox have thought of this however, and have included a USB connection so the scanner can be used in a more conventional manner, and it is also possible to store images to SD card (including the 4GB Eye-Fi card). Additionally, the scanner can be set to Wi-Fi direct mode to establish a peer-to-peer connection with a mobile device such as an iPhone or tablet (free aps are available for both iOS and Android), which could prove very useful to business travelers who do not want to keep on changing WiFi settings for each different location.

Scanning is a simple process of feeding documents into the single sheet feed. This is fine for scanning photos and office documents, but rules out scanning things like books and there are only two buttons – power and function (mainly for cycling between the three available scan formats). Full page documents are scanned in under 11 seconds, and photos take just 5 seconds (although wireless transfer times will add 49 seconds to this). Scans are saved as PDF files by default, while images can be saved as JPGs.

The scanner resolution is 300dpi which, while not going to wow anyone, is plenty to give clear text scans which can be easily converted into editable text thanks to the bundled popular OmniPage OCR (Optical Character Recognition) software. Photo scans also look good, with balanced and well reproduced colors, although the 300dpi scan resolution would prevent you from magnifying them without making the photos looking ugly. However, for normal business use and for the web the quality is perfectly fine.

The Xerox mobile scanner comes with a strong selection of bundled software which, in addition to  OmniPage 17 for OCR work, includes NewSoft Presto BizCard for scanning and storing all those business cards you are presented with, and Nuance Paperport 12 for organising and filing all your paperwork.

The Good

  • Effective wireless scanner that works well
  • Fast scans (ignoring transfer delay)
  • USB connection and SD memory storage options available
  • Clear, good looking scans
  • Good software bundle
  • Rechargeable battery lasts for 300 scans

The less good

  • 300dpi scans  are a bit limiting for photos
  • Single sheet feeder cannot scan books
  • Documentation is weak (e.g. does not mention airplane mode)

Conclusion

This is a great little scanner that does exactly what it sets out to do. For the business traveller looking for a portable scanning solution that is compact, self-contained and wireless, this is a reasonably priced yet effective solution.