First Looks: Avision MiWand 2 Wi-Fi Pro
Avision MiWand 2 Wi-Fi Pro
Right now, going paperless is a very appealing notion with many cloud storage services offering a free amount of storage. While you can opt for e-bills and other forms of electronic documents and receipts, what happens to your old physical documents?
Scanning them is a given, but to place each and every piece of paper on a flatbed scanner seems like a tedious chore when you need to boot up your PC, and then start up the scanner. That’s why the Avision MiWand 2 Wi-Fi Pro offers a convenient option, and it’s portable to boot.
The Avision MiWand 2 Wi-Fi Pro comes with a feeder dock, while the non-pro version just ships with the scanner unit alone. The scanner unit weights about 260g with the rechargeable battery inside, which makes it relatively light if you really need to carry the scanner unit around.
The scanner comes with a small 1.8-inch LCD display which also displays 2-second previews of your JEPG scans. While it does aid with checking if your scans are aligned properly, it’s much too small for anything else. Beside the display are four buttons to help with navigation and operation. There’s the up and down direction buttons, a power button which also doubles up as the scan button and the return button.
You can choose to save the scanned images as JPEG or PDF files, which will then be saved to a microSD card (the scanner ships with a complimentary card). At the bottom of the scanner are two rollers, which allow you to glide the scanner over the page that you wish to scan.
You can also attach the scanner to the feeder dock, which is more convenient if you wish to scan more than a single page. As soon as a page is inserted into the feeder dock’s feed slot, the unit will begin the scanning process automatically. The feeder dock runs on external power, so while you do not need to have the rechargeable battery of the MiWand scanner fully charged, you will still need to connect the feeder dock to a power outlet.
The scanning process is very straight-forward as all you need to do is to place the page you want so scan on a flat surface and roll the MiWand 2 Pro over it slowly after pressing the scan button. The MiWand 2 pro offers three scan resolution, 300 dpi, 600 dpi and 1200 dpi, which should be more than enough for most users.
We did notice that even though the auto-crop function was enabled, somehow the MiWand 2 Pro didn’t succeed in cropping the excess edges out, so be prepared to spend some time cropping your scans. You will also have to try to roll at a slower controlled pace, as rolling the MiWand 2 Pro too fast will result in a "compressed" scan as the scanner is unable to process the input at that rate.
Mounting the scanner on the feeder dock saves you the trouble of rolling the MiWand 2 Pro over multiple pages; inserting a page into the feeder dock’s feed slot will automatically start the scanning process. However, since the feeder dock does not come with an automatic document feeder (ADF), you will have to manually feed each page, but that sure beats rolling over each page in our opinion. Scanning a page full of black text took about five seconds, so the MiWand 2 isn't too slow.
The MiWand 2 Wi-Fi Pro also comes with Wi-Fi. There’s a switch on the MiWand 2 Pro itself to toggle the Wi-F function which allows it to function as an access point. Your default web browser will automatically launch after you connect to the scanner (be it your PC or mobile device), and you can preview and download your scanned images from that webpage.
This means that you will need to log off your home/office Wi-Fi connection, connect to the scanner, and once you’re done downloading the images; connect once again to your home/office Wi-Fi connection. This is a rather cumbersome process so we recommend just connecting to the scanner via USB if you can afford to do so. Also, when the Wi-Fi function on the MiWand 2 Pro is on, you can’t use the scan function, so make sure you get all your scans done first before connecting via Wi-Fi.
The MiWand 2 Pro is definitely a handy accessory for the mobile warrior who might need to scan documents on the go, with its ability to share scanned images without a computer or dedicated software. The added feeder dock makes it easier to scan multiple singular pages, though of course a scanner with an ADF would be the most ideal, but that wouldn't be portable, nor low cost.
While Wi-Fi implementation is still considered a bit clunky due to having to view and download the scans with a web browser, the MiWand 2 Wi-Fi Pro offers a good balance between features, size and price at S$209. If you think you won’t really need the feeder dock, then the MiWand 2 at S$169 is a more affordable alternative. However, if you know where to hunt for these devices (such as during the IT fairs), you could get either of them for up to $20 lower than the suggested retail price.