Earlier this September, e-tablet company reMarkable announced their product of the same name. Taking some inspiration from prior readers like the Kindle, they developed an ultra-simplified tablet that does basically two things – read and write. Or draw. It does, however, come with a charging cable and a companion app for syncing to other devices, and one-click file transfer so you can move your documents onto something with more flexibility.
The reMarkable sports a 1GHz ARM A9 processor, Codex Linux operating system, 8GB of storage, the tablet pen with tilt detection, and cloud backup services. So yes, it does know that wifi is a thing, at least. The tablet measures around 7″ x 10″ x 0.25″, smaller but thicker than an actual piece of paper off of which it’s designed. The paper motif is reinforced by the reMarkable’s screen, which feels very similar to aforementioned processed tree bark and makes it easier for those used to writing and drawing on physical paper. That’s the whole idea behind the tablet – make a modernized, tech-savvy piece of paper.
Now for the real kicker. Interested buyers should expect to dump $600 for this thing. Yeah, you read that right – a six followed by two zeroes, and then the decimal. Other problems include a slower response time than other tablets and always-annoying screen burn-in, where images remain faded on the screen after being erased or deleted.
Despite these downsides, the reMarkable has already sold more than 35,000 units, and it is quite good at what it does. It’s easy to read on, and sketches made with the pen can look almost as good as if drawn with an actual pencil and paper.
Long story short, if you’re a pen-and-paper and book kinda person, and are rich enough to laugh at $600, the reMarkable might be for you. I think I’ll stick with my fully functional laptop, though, which was actually cheaper than that.
Matt Eschbach is a PC, Mac and Android indie game developer and fiction writer. His works have won multiple monetary awards from various contests. Graduating college in 2012 with a major in Game Design, Matt spends his time making stuff up and then building it. His favorite hobby… is sleeping.