You probably have better options than the candy bar-shaped monitor

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Of course, none of them are as funny

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Another day, another interesting gadget circling the internet – This is a very tall (aspect ratio-wise) portable monitor with an 8.8-inch display running at a resolution of 1920 by 420. it is called Elsonic EK-MD088, and while its size, shape, and built-in stand make it interesting, it also raises the question: What would you use such a narrow monitor for? And are there better ways to spend your 14,800 yen (about US$130)?


gizmodo tells The most obvious use case for such a long screen: It seems tailor-made for endlessly scrolling through Twitter or Instagram, keeping the gloom of the Internet always on the edge of your work. Honestly, this sounds like a great way to destroy your brain – when I first saw it, I immediately thought it would be cool to keep chat apps like Telegram and iMessage open on the side, so I’m on point. Can keep track of which friends and family are there for the whole day. You can also use it as a dashboard to monitor your IoT devices or for more whimsical uses – like getting full longcat Experience it without scrolling through, or seeing long tweets.

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Above: What type of content was this screen made for.

Although Elsonic has some notable features. for one, Ars Technica notes It doesn’t look like it will be readily available outside of Japan (and it’s not shipping there until February 2022). What’s worse, however, is that it uses USB-C for power… but not video. Instead, the monitor has a relatively obscure mini-HDMI port to handle input, which is a huge downside for the convenience. If you forget your display cable somewhere, you’re probably not going to meet someone who can lend you a full-size HDMI to mini-HDMI cable. It doesn’t even seem to have a built-in battery, so when the screen and clever built-in stand fold down to a compact size, you’ll lose some of those space savings to the battery bank you might want to bring with it.

Absolutely heartbreaking.

Elsonic is also justified, and I know it sounds silly, too narrow. While that’s fine for newsfeeds and timelines, it’ll be tough for general use—typical second-monitor apps like Slack can be great at 420 pixels wide, or even refuse to go that narrow. While the product page says you can use it horizontally as well, which will fix the app’s width problem, 420 pixels is barely any vertical height; You’ll probably see three tweets or messages when factoring in the task bar and windowed Chrome.

Plus, one of the marketing images shows someone editing code on it. It seems absolutely unbearable until you can Somehow write your tasks in 50 characters or less, Visual Studio Code will let you resize a window small enough to fit on Elsonic (unlike my code editor of choice, Nova), but at what cost?

It seems… unreal.
Image: Elsonic, via Nojima Online

Image: What your window would look like if it were actually running from 420 to 960.

While it’s easy to see the appeal of having a vertical screen that you can carry around with you, you definitely have better options. For desk use, many regular 16:9 and 16:10 computer monitors have stands that already let you orient them vertically, which will give you even more screen real estate. This LG monitors that are on sale now About $50 more than the Elsonic, but it’s also 24-inches instead of 8.8 and can function as a low-cost gaming monitor in the landscape with its 144Hz refresh rate. You can also possibly find a monitor that can be turned on for much cheaper than the asking price of the EK-MD088 by shopping around for used, office-focused Dells locally.

If bigger isn’t better for your use-case, or you’re looking for a portable solution, you can always pick up a used iPad. Apps like Duet Display let you use the tablet as a second monitor for a Windows or Mac PC via a cable (or even wirelessly using the Duet Air or macOS’ built-in SideCar utility). ), and may even support vertical orientation. Pair the iPad mini with a stand and you’ve got a slightly smaller, but wider version of the Elsonic. And, of course, when you’re done using it as a screen it will also be a tablet.

Image: Elsonic via Nojima Online

look familiar?

While those solutions may be more practical for most use cases, I agree that they don’t have the fun factor that tall boi does, and that there are niche use cases where Elsonic makes more sense. And hey, maybe I’m totally wrong on this one, and we’ll all have screens dedicated to Twitter by this time next year — though the idea is almost too dire to consider.

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