Saturday, September 10, 2011

Fellowes GoRiser portable laptop riser review

The Fellowes GoRiser is a portable laptop riser and part of Fellowes range of ergonomically designed products aimed at providing mobile warriors with the means of using their laptops in a more comfortable manner. It is capable of holding lalptops up to 17". What is different with the GoRiser and other laptop risers I have used in the past, including the Belkin Cushtop, is it is foldable and thus portable. Fold it up and carry it on your laptop bag for easy transportation. This product is part of Fellowes's Smart At Work campaign of increasing awareness on work ergonomics.

Because the GoRiser raise the laptop away from your knees, this helps in preventing head transfer to your more, uhm, delicate manners. It also prolongs the life of your laptop as it draws heat away from the laptop (and battery) through the air ventilation. The reason why Fellowes market this as an ergonomic solution is because it raises the screen of your laptop thus improving viewing angles and thus postures.

Unfortunately it isn't as simple as that.

Whilst the laptop is placed on the GoRiser, it is tilted towards the user thus actually increasing the likeliness of carpal tunnel syndrome. This reminds me of the Dell Adamo XPS with its incredibly stupid (bold to emphasise) forward tilted keyboard. A comfortable keyboard is always a flat one, or even better, a back tilted one.
So the GoRiser is an ergonomically one in a sense that it actually raises the screen to a good height level which helps with preventing back neck postures but it introduces another unergonomic position on your wrist. You could switch it backwards, but then you would lose one benefit and gain another. It is sort of a lose-lose situation. At least with this it is better than placing a hot laptop on your lap. Finding a desk would be the best solution, but this won't burn your lap.

If you are in need of a portable laptop riser I can recommend this. In fact I would suggest you get one if only because if you really do need to use a laptop on your lap, it is better to have this than having nothing at all. Just remember that it doesn't exactly improve typing comfort.

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