‘obento’ computing concept by rené wooram lee
the work of US-based designer rené lee, the ‘obento’ computing system concept integrates
a notebook, tablet, and smartphone into a single modular device, expanding the possibilities of networked use
while extending the life cycle of the product and providing easy portability of each component. ‘obento’ was shortlisted
from over 1000 designs in our recent designboom competition ‘a life with future computing‘, organized in collaboration with FUJITSU.
a laptop with 15" OLED screen serves as the structural base of the design. when used as an integrated system,
the 11" tablet (‘obento board’) and 4" phone sit in shallow depressions, flanked by a solar powered lithium-ion battery
and a 1TB SSD drive (‘obento drive’). when charged, the tablet and phone can be removed and used wirelessly,
or utilized independently as individual devices.
the basic laptop structure fits a tablet, smartphone, battery, and hard drive
when connected either physically or as a networked system, each screen may be used for different purposes and content.
for example, in daily use the tablet might display a keyboard while the notebook screen is used for visualization,
with the smartphone docked as a music player or clock. in photo editing, reference material may be loaded onto the phone,
while the tablet runs photoshop and the image being edited is displayed on the large screen.
the modular nature of ‘obento’ facilitates the use of multiple hard drives to store content, in a way that is not only portable
but also easily transmissible from one system to another by simply docking the drive in place. in both an ecological
and economic advantage, battery and disk storage can be upgraded without buying an entirely new device.
example of the devices in use in tandem for a common purpose, here photo editing
even when docked as a common system, each screen can be used for a different function
when charged, the devices can be removed from the dock and used together wirelessly, as shown in these two renders
each component is also fully functional as an independent device
those wishing to republish an excerpt of this article, please have the courtesy
to link back to this original article, and to mention that the project
was designed for the ‘FUJITSU design award: a life with future computing‘
competition, organized by designboom in collaboration with FUJITSU.