Turn iPad Mini into road-warrior tool

HANDY: The Zagg iPad Mini Folio adds only a little bit to the outside edges of the tablet. When closed, the entire contraption is 17mm thick.


    Jul 18, 2013

    Turn iPad Mini into road-warrior tool

    The New York Times

    CONNECTING a keyboard to a tablet goes a long way towards making the tablet more like a laptop.

    But one keyboard, the Zagg iPad Mini Folio, takes it a step further with one small refinement: a hinge that allows you to set the screen to any angle, just as you would with a laptop.

    Most keyboard covers, which close over the screen when the tablet is not in use, have a way to stand the tablet at a single angle.

    However, those keyboard covers usually have one advantage over the new Folio. Those with single position slots let you stand the tablet up horizontally or vertically, while the Folio has only a horizontal orientation.

    Outside of that, the Folio makes the iPad Mini so much like a laptop that I kept fumbling for the touchpad control (there isn't one, of course), rather than immediately reaching for the touchscreen.

    The Folio adds only a little bit to the outside edges of the tablet. It is 6mm thick, and, when closed, the entire contraption is about 17mm thick.

    The keyboard is larger than the one on the iPad screen, although it will still seem a little cramped for people used to a full-size tablet or laptop keyboard.

    Setup was easy enough, with a push button to start the Bluetooth pairing of keyboard and tablet.

    A neat aesthetic feature of the keyboard is the ability to backlight the keys with a variety of colours. It drains the keyboard's battery faster, but it does look good.

    The company says the lithium battery will last three months with two hours of use a day without recharging. It is charged via a USB port, but is not replaceable.

    My only real quibble with the keyboard is that, even with the faux-leather finish, the polycarbonate feels a little cheap. But at a list price of US$100 (S$126), the street price may not be much more than that for a high-quality case without a keyboard.