Scanners are quickly becoming one of the most important tools in the knowledge worker’s toolbox. They are de-siloing paper-based information in hybrid work environments. And instead of using a scanner just to take what’s on paper and store it in computers, businesses are using them to find and extract specific bits of information in paper and apply it in some other workflow.

Scanners are evolving to meet the needs of a more hybrid workforce, and manufacturers are racing to incorporate personalized UIs and bigger touchscreen displays on standalone, network-connected scanners that can send jobs to all the cloud services and business applications employees need to use to get the job done. Epson’s latest addition to its stable of network scanners, the Epson DS-790WN, is a perfect example.

The Epson DS-790WN replaces the DS-780N, Epson’s first-ever network device. Like other network models, the device doesn’t require a PC, and walk-up users can route their scans to cloud services, local and network folders, and USB storage. The new model comes with a bigger touchscreen (4.3″ vs. 2.7″), Wi-Fi (in addition to Ethernet) connectivity, and scan-to-USB capabilities. The device is also rated for a higher duty cycle (up to 7,000 from 5,000).

Focus on Convenience, Security, and Versatility

As digitization accelerates and paper usage remains steady, businesses will invest more in scanning. But it’s not economical to buy 15 scanners for 15 people if they all work in the same place — a shared scanning environment would be the ideal setup. The Epson DS-790WN is a particularly good fit for such an environment because of its versatility.

The device also strikes a good balance between convenience and security. When paired with Epson Document Capture Pro Server Authentication Edition and a USB-connected card reader, you can restrict usage of the device to only those who have access cards. You can also set policies that restrict which users have access to certain settings and workflows. That way, users cannot change the device settings — which can be a security concern — or accidentally route scans with sensitive information to the wrong place, where everyone can see it.

Enforcing authentication also helps you personalize the experience, as each user is presented with a UI that is assigned to their credentials. The scan-to functions and jobs can be customized, allowing users to color-code jobs or use icons to ensure users select the correct option. For example, all red buttons are for accountants, green buttons are HR, and so on. The icons can help further differentiate between the different jobs within a department. Users can also operate the device using the Epson Smart Panel App on their Apple or Android smartphone or tablet. This allows users to operate the device without having to touch common surfaces (like the control panel of a device that several people use each day).

The Epson DS-790WN provides office and home users with a personalized scanning experience through a touchscreen display, isn’t anchored to a PC, and can digitize and store paper documents in precisely where it’s needed. If we are all lucky, it will only be a matter of time before you see Shaq on TV telling you the same.