Fujitsu's mobile ScanSnap scanner (the $229 iX100) may be the most versatile scanner around. Not the most powerful, mind you, but the most versatile. Small and portable, it not only lets you scan to Macs and PCs, but also to iOS devices.
Fujitsu says the ScanSnap is the lightest and fastest of its kind that comes equipped with a built-in battery and Wi-Fi connectivity. I haven't researched every scanner out there, but I'll take them at their word (the iX100 weighs 14 ounces and measures 10.74 x 1.87 x 1.42 inches).
The iX100 includes an image processor (the GI Processor) inside the scanner that produces its own wireless network, so you can connect from just about anywhere and instantly scan documents to your device or a cloud-based services such as Evernote, Google Docs, and Dropbox. This means you can have a group of travelers or students, for example, connected and scanning documents to multiple devices, all without the need of a WiFi hotspot or Internet connection. Needless to say, this is extremely convenient.
The iX100 boasts one-button scanning. Press that button and you can create searchable PDF or JPEG files. The ScanSnap x100 also boasts a lot of handy productivity features. It comes with business card and receipts scanning software as well as “automatic document stitching” capabilities, so documents larger than legal size, such as charts and diagrams, can be easily scanned and stitched together.
If you're familiar with previous ScanSnap products, it will come as no surprise that the svelte scanner comes with intelligent scanning features, such as automatic paper size and color detection, automatic de-skew, orientation, blank page detection and deletion, and more.
Once you've scanned your first document, you can easily continue your workflow. Just place the next doc into the feeder, and the iX100 continues to scan automatically. Press the Scan button when you're finished to complete the transaction.
The iX100 is designed to be used on-the-road and to let you work in small, cramped spaces. Flip up the exit guide and the scanner will return the sheet upward back to you. Flip it down, and it will scan plastic cards and postcards.
It can handle wide paper, as well. For example, you can fold A3 content in half, then scan both sides. If the image appears to be connected along the centerline, the scanner will "stitch" them back together.
If you're scanning to your Mac, an optional Quick Menu lets you scan directly to cloud services such as those previously mentioned. You can also scan directly into a folder or email, into an editable Word or Excel, or into the specialized apps (Organizer, CardMinder, and Receipt) that come with the iX100.
But what if you need to scan to something other than a Mac (or, if you must, a PC)? The ScanSnap iX100 can use your existing Wi-Fi router to scan directly to an iOS, Android, or Kindle Fair gadget. If your Wi-Fi network isn't available, the clever little scanner will transmit its own "internal" SSID so you can scan anyway.
Despite its small size, the iX100 is plenty zippy. It boasts a speed of 5.2 seconds per letter size page — and this at 300 dots per inch.
The iX100 isn't cheap, but it's a powerhouse in a small package. What's more, it's bundled with a three-month Evernote Premium license while supplies last.