Colebrook Bosson Saunders (CBS), the brand known for award-winning industry firsts, such as the Ollin monitor arm and Oripura Laptop Stand, have brought to market yet another ergonomically strong, innovative product – Monto, an accessory that makes sit-stand possible anywhere and anytime.
CBS are experts in ergonomic work tools, and are committed to enhancing the way people work to the best of their ability, in a manner they’re most comfortable. Their latest product, Monto, is a simple yet highly effective accessory that is portable and can be retrofitted to existing work surfaces to enable sit-stand modes. It’s also possible to use it in conjunction with a CBS dynamic monitor arm or laptop support, and can effortlessly transform any fixed desk into a height-adjustable workstation.
The Review Crew
From left to right: Pooja Premkumar, Senior Interior Designer, SBID; Swati Rokade, Associate, GAJ
Making Sit-Stand Simple and Accessible
“Human beings weren’t built to sit and work for extended periods of time,” says Elias Azar, Regional Sales Manager, Middle East, Africa & India, CBS. “This form of working has only been around since the industrial revolution, which in terms of human history is next to nothing. So the way we work isn’t good for our posture and overall health, and this is what drives CBS and our product development efforts. We want to design and build products that work for us, not against us.”
Most sit-stand solutions today are mechanical or electronic height-adjustable desks. “This is totally fine, but it does have certain limitations,” says Elias. “It can be expensive and bulky for a single person. For some companies, when you’re considering thousands of employees, the cost can prove to be daunting. Even more so considering we have a work from home or hybrid model that’s gaining traction now.”
With Monto, the goal was to design a light and portable solution that offered excellent ergonomics, flexibility and stability. CBS delivered on that impeccably well. The design of this accessory is smart and thoughtful. It provides a stable platform for your laptop or keyboard, and is capable of working with an external monitor as well. Even better if you’re working with existing CBS monitor arms – a simple additional accessory allows the monitor arm height to be raised along with the Monto. What’s more impressive is its stability, and the noticeable absence of vibration or shaking as you type.
The sleek and thin profile gives it a nice minimal and lightweight aesthetic, one that doesn’t interfere with an existing screen. The nice curved profile at the end facing the user is intentional and ergonomically crafted to allow hands to be placed at a comfortable height and angle to avoid issues like carpal tunnel syndrome. The human-centric design extends to the construction and material of the flat surface as well. The soft-to-touch yet durable top surface provides a tactile, in-built mouse mat. This enables smooth movement that isn’t slippery yet comfortable. Thoughtful design elements like these make Monto such a great accessory – a unique, effortlessly adjustable ergonomic sit/stand solution that fits seamlessly into the modern workspace, wherever that may be.
Swati: It’s so agile, flexible and easy to use, which makes it a definite winner. In terms of usage, you can install it with minimal effort. I like the bit where you just have to scan the QR for instructions, you’re saving so much paper and packing with that! The fact that it’s such an easy retrofit would make it accessible to both individuals and companies. There’s certainly a lot more they can do in terms of possibilities of branding or having different colour schemes.
Pooja: The visuals of it and the design is so good, but even the functionality is exceptional. I like the weight and firmness, and how it remains stable. I’m drawn to products that are simple and functional. Anything that remains true to its core use while also looking great gets a thumbs up from me! It’s got a sleek and minimal look. However, as a designer, I do want to see more colours, finishes and options out there.
Easy Installation and Adjustment
“Sitting and leaning towards your screen with your head tilted forward is one of the worst things you can do for your shoulders and back,” says Elias. “Every inch you move or tilt forward adds on a five kilo weight on your shoulders, piling on additional stress and causing your muscles to work harder. This is why sitting for extended periods of time and in positions that aren’t ergonomically correct can be very bad for your health. CBS has designed the Monto to be as simple as possible to install and adjust. It has to work for you, not the other way around.”
A truly underrated aspect of Monto is the elegance of the mechanism. The effort needed to move and adjust the height is next to nothing! A spring assisted lift mechanism makes this simple and smooth. Monto’s unique straight-up-and-down lift has nine working heights, from 2 cm to 43 cm, enabling easier use and adjustment over all other competing products in the market. Its lowest height has minimum impact on sit-height working, and ensures healthy wrist positioning. The spring assisted mechanisms have gravity lock latches for a gliding movement when it’s correctly positioned on their feet. Durable cast aluminium legs and a non-slip, anti-scratch base mean this sleek product will not take away any aesthetic value from your desk.
As with most CBS products, there’s incredible value in this one too. And the market entry timing could not be more fitting. With Flexible or hybrid working on the rise, people are looking for accessories that will help them stay equally productive without having to trade off their health. Sit-stand solutions are well placed in this category, and CBS comes out on top once again with its exceptional design and competitively priced product.
Swati: While the initial attempt at adjusting the height was less than perfect, it just takes one try to learn and then it’s extremely easy from there. I would recommend add-ons, like a USB hub, which I think would really increase its utility. It might be slightly on the higher side considering it doesn’t support electronic connections, but given the value, the build quality, the sustainable manufacturing and how it can last up to 10 years, I think it’s worth it. It also comes in plastic-free packaging, which is awesome!
Pooja: Not everyone has the space or budget to invest in a height-adjustable desk. In that regard, this product works so well. The choice of height is truly flexible, which I really appreciate! It’s not just two or three heights like other products. It might take a bit of effort to convince an individual user, given the price point, but I can see larger organisations investing in this given the recycled content and longevity. It’s so durable and comfortable as well, which earn it some major brownie points in my opinion.