If you’e got a smartphone you can use it to jot notes — but you have to turn the screen on to actually see those notes. If that’s a problem for some reason or other, Tegware has a solution.

The company is launching an iPhone case called the Tegware Bagel which includes a built-in digital wipe board. It’s based on the same technology used in the Boogie Board line of products from Improv Electronics, and in fact I found the Bagel at the Boogie Board booth at CES 2014.

Tegware Bagel

Here’s how it works. Grab a stylus, fingertip, or any other pointy object and start doodling on the black screen. Anything you write will stay on the screen until you hit the small button below the display to erase it, etch-a-sketch style.

There’s no way to save notes for posterity with this system, and you can’t sync notes with your iPhone in any way. Instead the Bagel is kind of like having a stack of sticky notes on your iPhone case.

It took me a while to figure out why you’d want to have this sort of device when you’ve clearly already got an iPhone. But then it occurred to me that sometimes you need to jot a phone number, address, directions, or something else that you don’t need to save for long… but which you might need to refer to frequently and quickly. The Tegware Bagel can let you do that over and over again with new notes.

It has a built-in battery that’s good for up to 50,000 screen wipes, which means you can probably go about three years before the battery dies.

At launch the Bagel will be available for the iPhone 5 and iPhone 5S. Eventually the company plans to offer iPad-sized cases and digital wipe boards as well.

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