Rated 5 out of 5 by GeneralCounsel Unbelievable Productivity Tool
As the General Counsel for a real estate development company, I am constantly reviewing legal/transactional documents -- leases, purchase agreements, PPMs, partnership agreements, joint venture agreements, condominium declarations, title materials, easements, developer's agreements, indemnity agreements, access agreements, Phase 1/Phase 2 reports, construction contracts, franchise agreements, loan documents, term sheets, lease proposals, NDAs, etc. As a general practice, before I make any revisions to a document I mark up the document with my comments (generally via interlineated hand-marked annotations) which are then shared with my management team for their review and input. Before I came across the Sony DPS, I had to print documents on reams of paper to prepare markups of working drafts. Moreover, before the Sony DPS, if I traveled or worked remotely, I had to carry multiple brief cases to tote multiple documents and note pads. NOW things have changed! I carry the Sony DPS and a lap top, that is it. I can have access to multiple documents and files on the exceptionally light Sony pad without the bulk of note pads and printed documents and document binders. This is a great device for my needs. Besides the convenience of marking up PDF copies of transactional documents on a DPS, note taking is a breeze and I no longer have to maintain separate note books for each of the many projects that I manage -- tried to use an iPad to take digital notes, but never felt comfortable with the small sized screen and quirky input issues.
February 13, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by Eggmont Premier electronic reader
Don't think of this as a replacement for your laptop or as an alternative to a tablet. It's a replacement for the piles of reading you need to lug home or on the train to stay caught up.
First the good: The DPTS1 is feather-light. The screen is sharp and big -- a full-size page so there's no scrolling around to read a document. Reading in bright sunlight is a pleasure.The pen works (no batteries!) for annotations and highlighting. And the ability to sync with a network folder makes it simple to add or delete files.
Now the bad: The pen isn't so great for taking notes in meetings or court. When writing, the screen sometimes treats the pressure from your hand as a command to flip the pages forward. And the handwriting is too imprecise for extensive pages of notes. The pen works best for highlighting and notes in the margins.
Finally, the price is sky high. If this reader were $400, it would be a no-brainer, and I would buy one for everyone in our law firm. The price will put it out of reach for many would-be buyers, and that's too bad.
Overall, if you do a lot of reading for a living, this is a great choice to lighten your briefcase and save your eyesight.
November 5, 2014
Rated 2 out of 5 by MattZN Hardware ok, software incomplete
It works but there are some significant deficiencies that make it considerably less useful than it could be otherwise.
(1) Pen sensitivity is only good if you move the pen slowly. Handwriting at normal speed results in very clunky output. The tablet misses pen motion when the pen is moved quickly. This makes it difficult to use the tablet as a paper replacement... real paper and pen winds up being superior.
(2) Network sync is extremely primitive. It's impossible to access a large library of PDFs in any convenient fashion because the tablet wants to download it all. A samba/windows share accessed like a live filesystem with download option would be far better.
(3) There are many PDFs that I want to mark up which the tablet will not allow me to edit due to a read-only bit in the PDF, forcing me to run the PDF through an adjustment program. This makes no sense whatsoever. The tablet should allow me to mark up any PDF.
(4) I didn't expect a fast reaction time for a paperwhite display. However, the UI elements for moving between pages and editing are unfortunately very primitive, making working with a large document difficult.
All of these problems could be fixed. Honestly, I don't even know why Sony produced the product with the software in such a decrepit state. It could be so much more, with a little effort. I'm giving it 2 stars because basic functionality works, but it doesn't work well enough for us to really use.
October 29, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by bobw nice device; pain to purchase if not in US
The DPT system is great. The only A4 reader i am aware of. Way better than an iPad for reading scientific papers.
Search could be improved (requires exact matches). Built in sync to dropbox would make it awesome. But it is usable and I now widely use it. I have some 7000 papers and books stored on it!
But it was a royal pain in the neck to buy (as I do not live in the US). Sony will not ship to international addresses? Why?! So I had to ship to a friend, then pay exorbitant courier fees and customs duties.
October 29, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by arlynn Love the hardware, needs 2nd edition software
My need is reading tech data for and drawing correlations. The reading is fine but have to have a way of ranking and storing the papers. Can annotate the document but then can not have some means on the directory pages to hold the good papers and toss the poorer ones off the device. Also need a software means of getting to directory rather than having to push the physical button. Also on directory page need estimate of file size because large files take a long time to load and need warning rather than just spinning dial. Need to be able to move open document to work space so can couple documents together while reading once determine there is a link to documents without exiting out.
November 26, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by Technophil Revolutionary Product, Very Specific Purpose
I have been waiting for a paper-sized portable digital device with accurate stylus input for a long time. I play piano/keyboards for musical theater pit orchestras and wanted a device to both annotate and display my PDF scores. Unfortunately this device fell a little short in a couple of key areas for my use case, but it's still a great device.
I toured the Digital Paper around my day job's legal, standards, and IT departments and it received universally positive reviews. Pair this with some kind of OCR software on your computer and you have a killer note-taking setup, as well as an awesome way to carry around and mark up lots and lots of documents without all of the associated back strain. This is where the Digital Paper really shines: it is lightweight and the display is some fantastic-looking e-ink technology. It's also as big as a regular sheet of paper, which was of highest priority to me.
As for digital sheet music, it is not yet up to my high performance-level standards. Sony, I will buy this again in a heartbeat if you can do two things: 1.) Allow me to attach a USB keyboard/pedal that sends page up/page down keypresses in order to turn the pages without using the finger swipe motion (see: micro-USB OTG adapter), and 2.) assure me that 100% of the time the page turns will be lightning fast. Every once in a while I would encounter a slower-than-normal page turn or my page turn swiping motion would fail to register correctly (perhaps two or three times in a 250-page document), and because playing piano is critically time-sensitive, the Digital Paper sadly proved to be unusable for my purposes. The page turn speed is good enough, but it needs to be 100% reliable, not 99%. (Maybe doing a half-page turn instead would help in this area? I'll beta test for you. I'd even be willing to leave it plugged in to USB power if the unit went into some kind of high-performance mode for page turns.) Luckily, these only would seem to be software tweaks, as the display's refresh rate is quite good otherwise.
All of that being said, if you want to take a huge leap towards going truly paperless (and you don't have to play a live performance), this device is the way to go.
September 8, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by JohnLitigator Good Start for 5 Star Product
I'm a trial lawyer, and a too frequent early adopter of new technologies/products.
The Sony Digital Paper presents as a product still in development, and in fairness, is in fact a very recent first release. Nonetheless, the product I received looks and performs more like a prototype than a market ready device. I called technical support inquiring as to whether the operating system is still being developed and improved (it has not been updated since 12/2014 and currently presents very limited functionality - even within its current very limited capabilities). It is unfortunate, and perhaps telling, that Sony support could only look at the same web site I looked at before making the call, in an attempt to answer my specific inquiry. No answer, no knowledge, no training to market the device... likely means no or minimal continued efforts to make improvements to the product.
Sony Digital Paper is a fun gadget, and I will likely use it as a legal pad replacement in trial (although I am concerned about data loss) as well as to reference my exhibits. As a legal pad replacement, it has by far the best "feel" compared to other available products. The viewing real estate of the screen is fantastic. There is a slight lag in the product's response to use of the pen, but that lag is very slight, and easy to get used to. My math suggests I will only need forego purchasing about 1,200 legal pads to reach a return on investment, so its a good thing i also find other value in using new tech.
I have no desire to change my encrypted cloud service, and the product currently only works with two other services, neither of which do I prefer. With fully functional cloud service through other providers, such as Dropbox, this device would be substantially more helpful in my litigation practice. I potentially could use a thrid party service, such as DropDAV, to get around the limitation, but I understand those services are limited in upload capacity (and therefore sync capability).
I am hopeful that this product continues to be supported and improved upon by Sony, as it does have great potential. If I discover the reality of that effort, one way or another, I will update this review. Confirmation of Sony's continuing efforts to improve the product would add a star to my rating (just for the promise of future improvements).
March 20, 2015
Rated 4 out of 5 by Phaedrus Good Start with Potential to be Great
About me: Software developer who uses lots of notes to organize and structure ideas, designs, and implementations. Notes often include diagrams. I am also a Kindle DX owner and prefer e-ink technology over backlit screens for reading. Page turning is not as fast on e-ink and color is replaced with grayscale. If you cannot accept that reality, this is not for you. I don't find either an issue and the ability to view multi-page displays or scroll through pages by holding my finger down at the end of a stroke more than compensates for the "slowness" of page turns. Slow is relative, it's really "noticeable" vs instantaneous.
Using touch and gestures for selection and navigation.
Writing is very near to natural writing on paper. I replaced the nib in the pen with a felt nib from a Wacom pen and it performs even better.
I have been able to replace piles of paper notes with well structured notes that stay together.
Unlike a paper tablet, I can insert pages or add pages to keep notes on a specific subject together. This alone is worth the hefty price for me.
Organizing notes in folders to keep context around information is essential and the DPTS1 does this fairly well.
Workspaces allow me to link together documents from different folders into a common access point.
Size is perfect providing a full letter size page.
Very thin and light weight.
Menus are intelligently placed and structured and stay out of the way when not needed.
The gestures can be a bit finicky, especially the zoom in and out. I find moving a little slower helps.
The buttons placed at the bottom of the tablet cause problems when writing towards the bottom of the page. Too much pressure from my wrist can suddenly change to the home screen or display the menu. These would be much better placed along the top to stay out of the way of writing or holding the tablet.
Likewise for the power adapter plug and power button. They would be more convenient at the top when writing while plugged in, especially writing off-table using lap or holding the tablet..
It would be nice to be able to set the thickness of the pen rather than have just fine and bold. Or at least have some variation within each of them. Fine is a bit too thin for my taste, bold is about right, but then I have no way to bold specific text if everything is in bold.
Add copy and paste functionality. e.g. add a marquee tool that allows me to select a section of text or drawing and cut or copy and paste to another area or to another document.
Add a Windows Explorer-like view that allows me to move documents from one folder to another on the tablet. While doing this via the computer works well there are plenty of times it would useful on the device.
Add black text color. Current options are blue and red.
Add two or three highlight colors. These could be displayed as varied shades of gray and identified by color in the menu.
Include more pen and nib options.
Add a notebook type cover that can fold around back to support the tablet while taking notes off a table.
Most of all keep it a single-purpose device. I don't want to play games, or surf the web, or take pictures, I want a efficient and effective tool for taking and managing notes. This device does that extremely well and with a few minor form changes could be near perfect.
March 1, 2015