Output road test: the Bouncepad
What do you think?
POST A COMMENT
By James Matthews-Paul
2 November 2011
The Bouncepad provides a cost-effective way to make the iPad into a display device or kiosk
The Bouncepad was born out of an Applounge hack day. For the uninitiated, hack days are problem-solving events where a situation is posited and a solution cobbled together for future development, and Tobi Schneidler's team at Spotspot took it and ran with it. The finished, manufactured product is something completely different: a sleek, simple and modular format suited to many environments, converting the simple iPad into a fully-fledged kiosk solution.
The sign and display world has had an elephant in the room for the last few years. Digital signage has been seen as too cumbersome for small-scale installs such as high-street stores, lobby areas or individual commerces, but static signage isn't always cutting it for companies with a more modern flavour. Then came the iPad, the ubiquitous tablet device. It's elegant, fast, and users know how to engage with it instinctively. It's also the right format for a multitude of applications, and many companies have already optimised their web content for tablet devices, making it a great potential advertising tool.
But you can't leave an iPad lying around, and it's not robust enough on its own to deal with the bashing about it's likely to receive in a retail or school environment, say. Enter the Bouncepad, which gives the iPad the required robustness and security without removing the required functionality, maintaining the sleek design ethic that went into the original product.
The Bouncepad comprises an aluminium casing and fascia held together by a key mechanism and attached to a hollow stalk, concealing the USB cable for continuous power. The case is pretty impenetrable, and the Bounce model is supplied either in portrait or landscape configuration; other models give you the choice, though, or allows you to let the user decide. You can also pick a 'closed home' or 'open home' fascia to restrict or permit access to the iPad's home button. The device fits snugly within its housing, with appropriate padding to make sure it isn't damaged, and while the bend on the power cable is a little tight to tuck it back into the neck it's unlikely to wear your cable down faster than any other use.
Each Bouncepad can be screwed directly to a surface or can be provided with a 5kg freestanding base. Variation is provided by the neck, which comes in a number of forms and decides suitability to application or environment.
Bounce has a flexible stalk which Bouncepad describes as 'easy and playful', returning to its home position after bouncing. The pliable but sturdy Gooseneck lets the user move the screen around and it'll stay where it is, while Static 60° and Static 30° do as their names imply and lock the screen in appropriate position for higher or lower surface attachments. Bouncepad Desk raises the screen at a slight angle for point-of-sale and other applications, and Lounge is a moveable feast tethered by a cable and resting on a funky stub. There are also three wall-mounted options: Wallmount, presented at a slight angle; VESA, giving a dead-on approach; and Branch, which has a sleek upward curve for lower positions. A freestanding option is in the offing, according to the manufacturer.
The main downsides to the Bouncepad aren't much to do with the stand itself, and are instead the inherent problems of using an iPad for display: most uses require a stable WiFi connection, for example, and viewers will always want to try and fiddle. However, if you're looking to make the iPad an intelligent display solution, you'd be pressed to find better.
Anyone who wants to make an iPad into a public-facing display.
Bouncepad makes the iPad a kiosk for retail, retail, events and exhibitions, hospitality, lobbies, schools and many other commercial environments and can be used for anything from POS to digital menuboards and ordering systems to in-store marketing. Pairs particularly well with the MediaKiosk app.
Pros and cons
You're bound by the limitations of an iPad as a display device (unless you commission a bespoke cradle for, say, a Galaxy Tab) but it's strong, easy to install and a great way of harnessing a very consumer-friendly bit of technology.
The best products take advantage of an existing technology and harness it for new good, and that's exactly what the Bouncepad does.
Ease of use: 5/5
Speed of installation: 5/5
Value for money: 5/5
Comments in chronological order (Total 0 comments)
There are no comments yet for this article.