bookscan

1DollarScan Scans And Digitizes Your Books For You “For A Dollar”

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Having old media digitized to get more space in the house, preserve them or simply make them portable isn’t exactly a new trend. But some startups, like Peggybank in the case of videos and photos, still find ways to stand out. And now a new company called 1DollarScan tries to do the same for books, documents, pictures and just about anything that’s printed on paper – through pricing.

1DollarScan is the US equivalent of a service in Japan called Bookscan, which is the largest of its kind in that country and hit several millions of US dollars in revenue within a year, according to the namesake company (in fact, the service is so successful that some customers in Japan currently have to wait for months to get their material digitized).

1DollarScan works in the same way as Bookscan: after receiving physical books or other printed material from customers, the company scans the papers, and converts them into PDFs or DVDs. That’s what similar services do, too, but as 1DollarScan’s company name suggests, prices start at just $1 (for ten photos or 100 pages in a book, for example).

The obvious idea here is to address a bigger market than competitors by making mass-scanning and digitizing more affordable. 1DollarScan tells me they are building on their experience in Japan and “radically” apply Toyota’s kaizen method to perfect operation and keep costs down in their “factory” in the US market.

Launched last week in the US, it’s too early to tell if 1DollarScan can deliver in terms of quality as well, but if it’s any indication, the Japanese parent company already filed for a patent to protect its (actually pretty impressive) device-specific resolution adjustment method (here‘s a video in Japanese that shows the scanning process). On its website, 1DollarScan says that digitized content can be viewed on all Android phones and tablets, essentially all iOS devices, the Kindle 3, Sony’s PRS-650, and the Nook.