You probably have better options than the candy bar-shaped monitor

The image is from Nojima Online.

Another day, another interesting device on the internet, this one is a very tall portable monitor with an 8.8-inch display that will run at a resolution of 410 by 1920. The Elsonic EK-MD088 is intriguing, but it also raises the question: what would you use a narrow monitor for? Is there a better way to spend 14,800 Japanese dollars?

The most obvious use case for such a tall screen is to keep the gloom of the internet away from your work. It seems like a great way to destroy your brain, and I thought it would be a good idea to keep chat apps open so I could keep an eye on what my friends and family were up to. You could use it as a dashboard to monitor your devices, or as a way to get the full longcat experience without scrolling.

This screen was made for a certain type of content.

The Elsonic has some notable quirks. Ars Technica notes that it won't be easy to get it outside of Japan, and that it won't be shipping until February 2022. It uses a power source that isn't video. The Mini-HDMI port on the monitor is a big downside for convenience. If you forget your display cable, you won't be able to get a full-size HDMI to Mini-HDMI cable from someone. It doesn't seem to have a built-in battery, so while the screen and clever built-in stand fold up to a compact size, you'd lose some of those space savings to the battery bank

:noupscale is a file on

Absolutely heartbreaking.

I know this sounds silly, but the Elsonic is just. It would be rough for general use, and common second-monitor apps like Slack can get pretty wonky at a wide width. The product page says you can use it horizontally, but it is barely any vertical height, and you can only see three messages in the task bar.

Someone is editing code in one of the marketing images. Unless you can write your functions in 50 characters or less, that seems unbearable. I don't know if it's worth it, but I'm not a fan of the idea of having a small window that can fit on the Elsonic.

Noupscale is a file

This seems unrealistic.

Nojima Online has an image of Elsonic.


If it were running at 960, what your window would look like.

It is easy to see the appeal of having a vertical screen, but you have better options. You can get even more screen real estate by using the stands that already let you orient the monitors vertically. The Elsonic is a good gaming monitor with a good refresh rate, but it is only 24 inches and is about $50 more than this one. If you shop locally for used, office-focused Dells, you could get a monitor that could be turned on its side for much cheaper than the EK-MD088's asking price.

You could always pick up a used iPad if you want a portable solution. You can use the Duet Display app to use the tablet as a second monitor for a Windows or Mac PC through a single cable, and even support vertical orientation. You can get a slightly shorter version of the Elsonic if you pair an iPad Mini with a stand. It will also be a device when you are done using it as a screen.

Noupscale is a file on

Noupscale is a file

Look familiar?

I will admit that those solutions don't have the fun factor that the tall boi does, and that there are niche use cases where the Elsonic makes more sense. Maybe I am wrong about this, and we will all have dedicated screens for the micro-blogging service by next year.


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