The Continuing iPad Keyboard Chase

I had been hearing of the upcoming release of a new iPad Bluetooth keyboard from Logitech. This, of course, peaked my internal craving for new technologies which is clearly evident when in comes to iPad related accessories.

On Saturday, I was strolling through the various displays at my local Best Buy store when I turned a corner and there it was; a cardboard stand adorned with FabricSkin keyboards.

I am certainly aware of my continuous battle between “Want” and “Need” in the realm of technology and the great tendency for “Wants” to masquerade as “Needs”.

At the time, I was ocillating between the use of the Logitech UltraThin¬† keyboard and the Apple Wireless keyboard/Incase Origami¬†combination. Both are good solutions, but each lacked something. The Logitech ultraThin lacked the protection I wanted for my iPad. The Apple/Incase combo allowed me to use a separate protective case for the iPad, but lacked some basic function. Most notably was a simple On/Off switch for the keyboard. It’s somewhat embarrassing when a cool tune starts playing from your briefcase when the Apple keyboard’s media button gets bumped because the keyboard wasn’t officially “off”.

Well, “Want” kicked “Need” out the door today when I walked out of the Best Buy with the FabricSkin tucked under my arm (after I paid for it, of course). The case paired easily with the iPad; no “pin” was requested. The case is currently sitting next to me charging up; getting ready for it’s debut at work in the morning.

The case addresses the two basic issues noted above. The FabricSkin is a case completely enclosing the iPad. Like the Apple wireless keyboard, it doesn’t have an On/Off switch, but it has something better. When the iPad is placed in “typing” position, magnets within the case detect the positioning and the keyboard is turned on. When the iPad is moved from the “typing” position, the keyboard is turned off; kind of a “set it and forget it” operating mode.

My test typing at Best Buy and here at home seem fine, but the true test is typing notes during my day-to-day use of the iPad at work. Will I have to search for keys more than I touch type? Time will tell.

The one downside currently is the price. At $149.99, the case seems a little overpriced. But “Want” didn’t care about that.


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