There are work stations, and then there is Altwork. The company, which manufacturers elaborate reclining desk-chair combos, brought its top-of-the-line product to the CES show floor last week, and it is nothing short of revelatory. For $5,900, you can work in the comfortable clutches of a pro-grade massage chair with all the excessive seriousness of an operator from The Matrix.
By holding one of the many preset buttons on a panel built into the desk, the Altwork Station transitions from a standing to sitting to lying position, all while a large metal monitor mount adjusts for the optimal viewing experience. Using magnets embedded in the desk and within a special affixed mouse pad, wireless peripherals stay attached even as the desk moves to a 72-degree angle.
The control panel has a number of preset options and a few different modes to extend and support your legs, for when you want a La-Z-Boy meets dentist chair vibe. There are also wheels on the station, which weighs about 250 pounds with a monitor attached, so you can move it around.
So sure, this thing looks absurd. But the experience of using the Altwork Station is actually borderline rapturous. Nothing can really prepare you for how pitifully pedestrian your standard work space feels after having many thousands of dollars of curved display-holding crane arm rotating above your face. And while it seems as if you’d be unable to get any work done whilst lying down, the setup leaves you surprisingly capable.
I didn’t spend a significant amount of time using the Altwork Station. Yet I was still able to competently type a couple paragraphs, cruise over to some websites, and use the attached MacBook as if it weren’t suspended in air above me.
Altwork has been around for quite some time. It was demoing its work station as far back as October of 2015. But it only just began shipping to Northern California customers last month. Apparently, because the device is sent out pretty much fully assembled, Altwork is starting slow and focusing on the nearby Bay Area, where it’s logistically easier to deliver its product. It’s worth noting that it does not come with a monitor — that you have to buy yourself.
Still, in the world of ergonomics, the Altwork Station reigns supreme. At $5,900, it’s a steep price only the most affluent work-from-home computer users can afford. You could purchase separate bits of the setup from the company for a lower price. But why stop short with this kind of of luxury? When you’ve got cash to burn — and an ultra-wide 4K monitor to mount — going big is the only option.