Out of all the devices in the consumer electronics industry, one of the few things that has yet to see massive amounts of innovation is the scanner. Atiz has tried to change that with its Scandock scanner, which utilizes the ever-improving cameras found within smartphones.
There are some cheap devices which also use an iPhone's camera in order to "scan" a document, but Atiz has taken things to another level with its $400 Scandock Premium.
Scanner applications are already popular on the Apple App Store as well as in the Google Play Store. However, the scan quality is sub-par a great portion of the time, particularly due to lighting issues. The Scandock has fixed that issue by using a set of lightbulbs to provide an even amount of light over any regular-sized flat document (book scanning is not recommended.)
Although its lighting features may be one of its best qualities, the amount of light produced by the Scandock can sometimes be detrimental as it makes it nearly impossible to get a good picture if there are other bright lights near the scanning area.
As the Scandock functions through the phone, an app is required and, while it may be basic, the iOS application used during this review works fine with the only downside being crashes (the crashes may have been the result of iOS 7).
One of the unfortunate aspects of the Scandock is that the pad used for scanning is sticky. Atiz decided to make the pad sticky in order to prevent documents from moving around and messing up a photo. However, peeling off the paper each time not only adds time to the scanning process but it can also cause individual pieces of paper to roll up.
Compared to traditional flatbed scanners, the Scandock takes up a significant amount of room and, unless you have a good size desk to set it on, it will be difficult to find a good place to use the scanner outside of the floor.
Scanning quality is definitely comparable to what you would receive with a traditional scanner and, although the lighting can sometimes be an issue, if you find a good scanning location, the PDFs and images come out fine without any real degradation in quality.
For $300-$400, the Scandock is by no means cheap and something that everyone needs, but for people with deep pockets, along with small businesses, a scanner like the Scandock can be a convenient and plausible alternative to a flatbed scanner.
Price: $400 (Atiz)