As a frequent ScanSnap customer, I was pretty unhappy about their decision not to support older hardware when they switched the software to 64-bit. There is good news, though. The newest version of ScanSnap Manager, version 7, adds support for older hardware. Amen.
Fujitsu recently released the ScanSnap Cloud, a cloud-based service for ScanSnap users. The idea behind ScanSnap cloud is pretty clever. Your scanner connects to the Internet and sends all scans up to ScanSnap Cloud where they are then distributed to your cloud service of choice, like Dropbox, Box, One Drive, Evernote, and others. ScanSnap Cloud can figure out if your scan is a document, receipt, business card, or photo and then can follow your specific instructions based on the category of document. ScanSnap Cloud will also do some rudimentary OCR and, where it finds a date in the document, set the file name to match.
The net effect of this service is that it allows you to remove your scanner from your computer. You can put it anywhere in your house or office where it has access to Wi-Fi and your scanning works just fine. I’ve been using my ScanSnap iX500 in my laundry room with ScanSnap Cloud. Now I just scan the mail as it comes in the door. I can trash and recycle as appropriate right there and the paper never even makes it up the stairs to my home office. Getting the scanner off my desk frees up more space and having the scanner next to the recycle bin means I scan things immediately now, as opposed to the old system where I let it pile up until the weekend. Win-win.
They made a clever video, below.
Full disclosure: Fujitsu has been a long time sponsor of the Mac Power Users and I’ve been a long-time customer of their products.
I’ve been a buying ScanSnap scanners for several years now. I’ve recommended them to friends, family, and professional colleagues and everyone of them has come back to say how much they like their ScanSnaps.
There are two bits of technology involved with scanning: the hardware device and the software interface. The thing that makes ScanSnap stand out is the way it delivers on both fronts. Fujitsu continues to push the envelope with its hardware and at the same time, continues to iterate its software to give Mac and iOS users plenty of options for their scanned documents.
This is most recently demonstrated with Fujitsu’s brand new ScanSnap iX100. The iX100 takes is an ultra-portable scanner, about the size of a three-hole punch. It is similar to the ScanSnap S1100 but adds several useful features.
The banner feature is wireless scanning. The iX100 will connect with your Mac. The device has its own processor that not only creates the PDF and JPEG files, but also creates the wireless bridge to your device. Pop it open, feed a page, push the blue button. No cables required. Wireless scanning with a portable scanner makes a lot of sense.
The iX100 can also connect to iOS and Android devices using that same built-in processor. If you are not on a shared Wi-Fi network, you can connect directly to the ScanSnap with your devices Wi-Fi radio and you are good to go.
Another clever feature is automatic image stitching. If you pull two pages out of a magazine with an image stretched across the fold, the iX100 will automatically stitch them back together.
The iX100 comes with that great ScanSnap software as well. I’ve been carrying my test model around in my briefcase (it’s only 14 ounces) and it is holding up well. There is an integrated battery that requires an occasional recharge (via USB).
I’ve got two good uses for this scanner. The first is when I’m in trial or deposition and someone hands me a new document. That isn’t supposed to happen but often does. I need documents scanned as soon as possible so I can incorporate them into exhibits, presentations, and other digital bits. Having the iX100 I can now handle this anywhere.
When not carrying it around, I’ve been keeping it in a utility drawer in our kitchen. This way, I can take a quick scan to my Mac or iPad for things that come in the mail or the kid’s school packets. The iX100 has quickly found a place in my life.
If you are looking for an ultra-portable, wireless scanning solution, check out the ScanSnap iX100, available now.
For an even more in-depth review, check out Brooks Duncan’s review at DocumentSnap. He’s got some excellent photos and videos to show off the iX100 in greater detail.
This week Fujitsu released a software and firmware update for the ScanSnap iX500 that lets you scan to you Mac (or PC) without a USB cable. I updated my scanner last night and it works great. Now I’m rethinking the location of my scanner. I could put it anywhere in the house and free up some valuable desk real estate. I’m already eyeing flat surfaces throughout my house. Perhaps even a corner in the kitchen. I can see it now: mailbox, kitchen scanner, recycle bin. If you’ve got an iX500, run your update and try it for yourself.