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Review Steelcase Gesture: Would you spend Rs 60,000 on a new age chair? I might

What if a so-called computer chair could give you a posture to lean back and enjoy the content on the tablet?

Written by Nandagopal Rajan | New Delhi | Published:December 21, 2013 11:23 am

Have you ever tried using a tablet while seated on a so-called computer chair? Well,you can use the tablet,but the entire posture would be awkward. You will either rest the tablet on your lap and look down,or hold it straight and get a neck pain within minutes. What if the chair could give you a posture to lean back and enjoy the content on the tablet,all the while providing support for your arms to hold the device?

This is the kind of chair that Steelcase,a century-old office furniture giant,is trying to give the world. Their new range of chairs are fluid and made to accommodate the new postures that we are all getting used to thanks to our new technology inclinations. I tested their new Gesture chair to see if technology can actually make living with our new devices easier.

The postures

The Gesture has been designed for multi-device scenarios. A typical Gesture owner will be someone who is using a smartphone and a tablet while sitting in front of the PC or laptop. I just had to look in the mirror to find such a person.

Gesture chair

The most common problem I have is during long calls is that I need to support my arms and a rest my head on the phone. When I do this on a conventional chair,my body stoops towards the left in an awkward angle. In the Gesture,you can raise the height of the both the arms and get your elbow up to your chest height to make calls easier. Lift both the arms and you have the best angle to consume content from either the smartphone or tablet with the devices being at your eye level. The arms can also swivel in and our offering another range of support options,like when you are typing. I found the arms a great place to rest the tablet while working on the PC. So far so good.

I have never ever attempted to relax on a chair with a tablet. That would be downright painful with the kind of chairs we have in our offices. Most of us would look for a sofa,couch or even a bed before settling in to read that amazing Sunday Express long format story. With this chair,however,you can go near flat as the seat can move forward and the back support can push back a long way … almost like a business class seat. This is good.

But what is this all about multiple gadgets? Can we use this with just a laptop? Oh,yes. That is the best part for me as someone who sits in front of a computer for almost 12 hours a day. The Gesture provides the best support for the back that I have seen in any office chair. Feeling a bit tired? Just turn the knobs to get a lean back mode to relax a bit. Not too much though… remember,you are in the office. All these postures are achieved by fluid movements and the backrest does not spring up or just fall back like average office chairs.

Gesture chair GRAPHIC

The problem

The Steelcase Gesture is a dream chair. It works like a dream too. But it will take you some time to understand how to work this chair and how to get to the best positions it offers.

But that is the least of your worries. The Steelcase Gesture has a $1,000 price tag which would add up to at least Rs 62,000 in India. And we know that we seldom get anything here at a straight Rupee conversion. Despite its amazing utility that would be a really expensive chair to buy.

The other way to look at it would as an accessory for three of your devices,which together cost Rs 2,00,000. Then this might not seem all that expensive. The chair will take a few more weeks to start selling in India,so you have some time to think this over.

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