As far as the driver goes, SiPix
has just recently announced that they’ll use Field
Software‘s PrintPocket CE software (which isn’t
really a driver but an entire program). Pentax does
this too, I didn’t like it then and I don’t like it
now. However, spokesman Alex Curyea from SiPix
told me that SiPix will include software of their
own in later upgrades, free of charge, that will support
printing for the Pocket PC. So, apparently, they’re
doing something about it as we speak. But the present
situation forces you to go with PrintPocket CE. It’s
not a bad piece of software, but there’s no denying
that this adds to the cost of the printer with another
$39.95. It’s extremely important that SiPix is clear
on this point and that their re-sellers are too, otherwise
the buyer will get a nasty surprise when he comes
home and finds that his driver will only work for
a limited amount of time – unless he pays. That being
said, PrintPocket CE works extremely well with the
Pocket Printer and takes care of the special needs
that such a small device as this one has. And, once
again, SiPix is aware of this and is working on something
that will solve this problem.
Print from your pocket.
No cords, no wires, batteries are included. That’s
what the Pocket Printer is all about. It uses A6-paper
and has almost the exact same measures as one, too.
It almost doesn’t weigh a thing, and actually looks
pretty cool with its transparent plastic design (there
is a more executive-stylish black version, too). I
had to see it to believe it, and when I unpacked it,
I still didn’t believe it. You grab it, hold it in
your hand (one hand is more than enough), turn it
around, weigh it, juggle with it, place it next to
your iPAQ and your Stowaway keyboard, and you think
to yourself: I can write and print from my pocket.
But you still don’t believe it. So I launched PrintPocket
CE, attached a paper and started printing a new chapter
from my latest novel. After only a short while, the
printer started working.
It’s not quiet – it reminds me of one of those receipt
machines found in stores, but your neighbours won’t
call the police either. With thermal technology and
special paper currently only available from SiPix,
the Pocket Printer delivers clear and crisp printouts
in A6-size, a size that shouldn’t cause any problems
for us mobile warriors. At first, after the original
awe of the gadget had settled down, I started looking
at the machine from a more critical perspective. Can
I really use this? I mean, A6… can I work with this?
I’m used to A4 or possibly A5, and decreasing the
size of the font makes the text hard to read. But
the key with all mobile devices is not to work against
them with your old-fashioned ways, but to work with
them with the new possibilities they offer. So after
some tweaking with the software and some small alterations
on my documents, I received printouts optimized for
the format, easy to work with, to bring along and
The printer uses both sheet paper and roll paper,
and I would say that both fill their purpose very
well. The roll paper is excellent for larger printouts,
but it does require you to cut off the pages manually
if you want to create a sequence (like pages in a
novel or a script). The sheet paper is fine for shorter
printouts. I never felt the need for a sheet feeder
since the roll paper does the most important part
of that job for me. And, as if sheet feeding in such
a small device wasn’t enough, the printer runs on
regular batteries, the ones you use for your Walkman!
I’m getting the feeling that the engineers at SiPix
are one step ahead of me all the time, as I sit down
and think: "Boy, I could really use this feature",
and find shortly afterwards that it’s actually there.
As far as support goes,
you’ll have to turn to Field
Software when it comes to the software. Should
you run into any trouble with the hardware, SiPix
has an excellent department for support that quickly
attends to your problem (which I know, since I did
ran into some trouble due to a fault of my own).
Any Pocket PC able to
CE can use this printer.
BUGS AND WISHES
I hope that SiPix
does something about the printing speed, since that
could be an annoying point when you print larger documents.
Also, special paper is never a good thing, especially
if SiPix is your only source. Costs will rise and
availability becomes something you must plan for.
It’s not too quiet, but although a more silent printer
would be nice only the most picky people will actually
complain about this. Lastly, having to spend another
$39.95 on the printing software is not being a good
sport. I never heard of a printer that doesn’t include
a full driver, up until just recently when mobile
printing is becoming a fact.
You can buy this
baby from SiPix for $149.00 at http://www.sipix.com/reseller.shtml. Be sure to browse all the listed stores, as I found
that some of them offered good rebates on this printer
now. Additional paper costs $9.99, for both the sheet
and the roll paper. For this price, I’d say the Pocket
Printer is a bargain.
mobile and cool!
roll and sheet paper
A bit noisy
paper is needed
software costs extra (what is it with these mobile
It doesn’t get any more mobile
than this. If you really want to bring your office
with you wherever you go, in a package as small as
possible, the Pocket Printer is your only choice.
Good thing for us, it’s an excellent one.