As a components startup, Astrohaus stands aside for the reason that of its special offerings centered specifically on writers and producing. Its debut solution, the Freewrite, looked like an outdated-school travel typewriter with an e-ink monitor. Now, it is again with a new unit it’s been doing work on for the earlier pair of yrs: The Freewrite Traveler. This far more transportable e-ink typewriter has a clamshell structure and isn’t much bigger than a Nintendo Switch, generating it a adaptable, go-anwyhere creating companion.
Astrohaus started teasing the Traveler a couple of decades back, prior to at some point launching an Indiegogo crowdfunding marketing campaign in November 2018 to get it manufactured. The crowdfunding was quite effective, raising over $600,000 on the system in advance of the marketing campaign finished, and then yet another $200,000+ in pre-orders immediately after that. Like numerous hardware efforts, it encountered a couple delays relative to its authentic supply timeline, but now the Freewrite Traveler is transport out to pre-purchase consumers.
In phrases of specs, it has up to four months of battery lifestyle with regular use, and weighs below two lbs ., with a folding design and style that is around half the surface area region of most laptops. The display on the top rated 50 percent is an e-ink screen, and there’s a sub-monitor for supplying data like network status. The bottom half houses the keyboard, which boasts over 2mm of journey for a great keypress really feel.
The situation is plastic, as are most of the components, and the exterior is a glossy black. The Traveler connects by using wifi, like the first Freewrite, and will allow you to sign-up an account to sync to up to a few separate folders of documents. When out of wifi selection, your get the job done is stored domestically, and it can sync to the cloud services of your alternative by way of Freewrite’s integrations every time you are linked.
Layout and attributes
The Traveler’s design and style is all about portability and benefit, although retaining the core usability attributes that make the first Freewrite these kinds of an ideal system for centered creating. The clamshell layout is deliberately large adequate to suit that total-sized keyboard comfortably, but keeps the monitor compact like with the authentic, which would make it much more moveable and makes sure that distractions are retained to a least – aided by the fact that all you can do on it is kind textual content, due to the fact there are no apps, browser or other capabilities.
Astrohaus has stayed pretty close to their primary eyesight for the Traveler, with some small tweaks together with the hinge structure. The finish outcome is a light-weight and resilient-sensation moveable electronic typewriter, with a keyboard that feels superb to form on – improved than any laptop in my experience. The keyboard is seriously the star of the clearly show in this article, because this is a purpose-developed product created for typing. The journey feels enough, particularly for a notebook-design gadget, and the lifted, rounded keycap wells make it simple to contact style easily all day if you want.
The show, when little, supplies exceptional legibility and contrast, however it is really worth noting that you’ll have to provide your have light-weight source, since as with the initial Freewrite, there’s no backlight or frontlight built in, and e-ink doesn’t present its possess light like LED.
E-ink is exceptionally electricity productive, even so, which is why you’ll get so substantially practical everyday living out of the Traveler. In my screening, it’s been running on its first demand for just about two weeks now, which is in line with the Astrohaus estimates.
The Traveler’s case options a piano black shiny exterior, which seems to be terrific, but swiftly picks up fingerprints. And existing Freewrite users could possibly detect that the exhibit has a marginally shiny sheen as nicely, in which the authentic was completely matte. That is since of a skinny piece of optically clear plastic that goes throughout the total width of the clamshell to guard the e-ink exhibit from the keyboard, according to Astrohaus. To me, it hasn’t been an problem in terms of usability or quality, just something to take note in terms of discrepancies.
Astrohaus has established a style and design that stands out, regardless of what you assume of the piano black finish. The contrast of the black with the white interior provides it a special, quirky and eye-catching layout that aids make certain you are going to hardly ever confuse the Traveler with any other gadget. And the products retain it lightweight and sturdy for conveniently taking it with you anywhere you may possibly want to go.
The Traveler’s hinge allows it it to open up to about 135 degrees, which is a excellent posture for laptop typing. It can also be positioned at any angle fewer than that for when you have it elevated at a table or desk.
The Freewrite Traveler is a distinctive product, with a particular attractiveness for men and women who are hyper-concentrated on a creating tool that provides all the positive aspects of cloud-connectivity with none of the downsides of a multipurpose resource like a notebook or personal computer. It can sync to Dropbox, Evernote or Google Generate so that you can conveniently build a cross-machine workflow for finishing up manuscripts and drafts, but on its have, the Traveler will ensure you remain targeted on the job at hand – and delight in by yourself even though executing so.
A transportable, digital writing unit like this one particular isn’t exceptional in the planet – several distraction-no cost composing fans use the Pomera line of products from Japan for this goal. But Astrohaus is unique in furnishing components tailor-created for North American and European markets, and they’ve finished an astounding position at providing on the possible of this machine even in a discipline of fairly several rivals.
The Traveler is reasonably expensive at $599, but there’s actually almost nothing else like it, if what you want is a laser-centered producing machine that brings together portability with good ergonomics, extensive-long lasting battery and cloud storage usefulness.