Improv Electronics plans to offer two new Boogie Board tablets later this year. Boogie Boards are inexpensive tablets designed for writing — and nothing else really. You can write a note or draw a picture on the low power LCD display and it will stay on the screen until you erase it.
The new models include a $20 Boogie Board Jot with a 4.5 inch display, and the $100 Boogie Board Sync with a 9.7 inch screen. Both should be available by the 2013 holiday season.
The Sync doesn’t just cost more because it has a bigger writing surface. It also has built-in storage, allowing you to save your notes as PDF files and transfer them to a computer.
As you might have guessed from the name, the Sync can also transfer files to a computer, tablet, or phone wirelessly, using a Bluetooth connection. That makes the Sync the first member of the Boogie Board product line to use wireless technology in that way.
When I visited with Improv Electronics this week though, I was actually more smitten by the Boogie Board Jot 4.5, an inexpensive new model small enough to hold in the palm of your hand.
The Jot 4.5 doesn’t have any storage or wireless capabilities. Instead, it’s sort of like a message pad or a blackboard. You can take a note and keep it until you erase it. Write down a phone number, a shopping list, or a message to a roommate.
Sure, it’s not quite as useful as a pad of paper or a stack of post-it notes, because there’s really only room for one message or picture at a time. But depending on your needs, you might be able to save a lot of paper.
The Jot 4.5 has a built-in battery that’s not replaceable… but it kind of doesn’t have to be. It should last for 50,000 erases, which the company says will last most users around 7 to 10 years.
Since the tablet is also very light, it’s easy to prop it up using the included stylus as a kickstand.