Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Scanbox: Foldable box that lets you use your smartphone as a portable scanner

Several months ago, I backed a Kickstarter for Scanbox, a foldable paper box with in-built light that would hold one's phone in place so that one could use one's smartphone for scanning documents and presentations. I forgot about it because it arrived in Singapore whilst I was in Paris. Today I had to scan some receipts and I recalled that I had never even opened the package before (even while moving house), so I took it out of its envelope for the first time...


Folded it together so the magnets snapped in place, found an old 9V battery and plugged it in to make the flat LED strip light up and OH MY GOD! Can I just say how simple and genius this is? It just works. And some of you might say, what if the iPhone isn't that great a camera? Well I can still read the receipt. I mean, life is too short to spend all day scanning receipts immaculately! Just scan the goddamned thing and move on with life! And as income tax filing season approaches, this suffices as a tool for digitising all your receipts and documents. I am planning to sell my bulky (but very awesome) Laser printer/scanner when I go to school in a few months time, but I can see this as one of the few things I'm definitely going to take along with me on that plane...


I got the Scanbox Plus for USD25 (S$31/£16) when it was on Kickstarter, but it is retailing now on the Scanbox site for USD34.95 (S$43/£23). It can be flat-packed (minus the battery) into an rectangle size just slightly larger than A4. The workmanship is okay (meaning that I think there isn't that much attention to detail and the product was not sufficiently protected for international shipping), and I know you could probably build your own semblance of a "Scanbox" out of cardboard and LEDs and magnets and any other additions... BUT... seriously, I have so many OTHER things I'd rather be building or doing. This box just works. The end.


  1. Cool!. I wonder if I can make something like this on my own. I think using old cheap plastic boxes here in my room will be a good start.

    1. I have always been flabbergasted at how expensive plastic boxes are! Cardboard is tons cheaper I'd reckon...