Folks, you have to admit that if you own an iPad you’re gonna want one of the many iPad keyboard cases out in the market sooner or later. Luckily for us, we got our hands on one of the best in the market from iPad accessory making giant ZAGG and is called the ZAGGMate iPad Keyboard case. Before I proceed with a detailed review, I’d like to take this opportunity and thank Mr. Garrett Fuller from ZAGG Inc. who was kind enough to send us a ZAGGMate review unit along with an iPad ZAGG LEATHERSkin in black to make things even better. Many thanks to you from iThinkDifferent Team!
Aircraft-grade aluminum with a bead-blasted, anodized finish that matches the iPad
Military grade high-density padding for superior drop protection
Embedded wireless Bluetooth physical keyboard
Special function keys for music control, volume control, slideshow, home, search, etc.
Only adds about 1/4 of an inch to the iPad
Size and Weight:
Height: 9.75 inches (248 mm)
Width: 7.625 inches (194 mm)
Depth: .54 inches (13.7 mm)
Weight: 12.8 ounces (.37 kg)
In the box:
MicroUSB cable for charging
Four rubber feet (optional)
$99.99 at ZAGG.com
Design & Build:
ZAGGMate keyboard case is made of high quality brushed aluminum in the form of a sleek front piece that seals you iPad’s screen for travel safety. Inside it is a nice black physical keyboard which has a similar layout as the Apple’s own iPad offering. It however, instead of a docking connector, consists of a fold-out hinge that locks easily by sliding into place and allows the iPad to lean on it such that the keyboard is positioned directly in front of it. This gives you a big advantage over Apple’s iPad dock as you can place your iPad in both portrait and landscape modes easily.
The keyboard is sized more like any traditional netbook keyboard and does not have much spacing like the ones from Apple. Nonetheless, it is pretty comfortable to type on. There is also a nice switch on the keyboard’s top left to turn it on along with another small button under it to turn on the bluetooth function. A small red and blue LED beside the switch indicates the battery, charging and bluetooth pairing status.
The Bluetooth Keyboard:
Pairing the ZAGGMate keyboard to your iPad is as simple as it gets. Just switch it on and press the keyboard’s bluetooth button while iPad’s bluetooth is on. Rest is done from inside the iPad’s bluetooth settings where you will be asked to type a few letter or numbers into the keyboard to complete the bluetooth pairing. I had no connectivity issues and was ready to use in a couple of mintues. The keyboard is actually a pleasure to use as you can type way faster on it when compared to the iPad’s virtual keyboard. There are 5 special function keys on the top left as well. These include a Home button, Spotlight shortcut , Photo frame, Virtual keyboard and a Sleep button to quickly turn off the iPad’s display.
A key feature of ZAGGmate bluetooth keyboard is its battery life as I have been using it for over 12 hours non stop and it hasn’t run out yet. In fact, I haven’t even plugged it for charging since I opened it up. According to ZAGG, the 510 mAh battery can last a couple of months in standby mode. An included mini-USB cable plugs into the mini-USB port at the bottom for charging which can be done using iPad’s own USB charger from Apple.
The iPad Case:
The ZAGGMate is a pretty sleek case as it adds merely 1/4 of an inch to the iPad’s thickness. It is also very light weight making it perfect for carrying around. However, the unit I received had a couple of small but rigid scratches near the bottom edge already when I took it out of the box. Though these are not visible unless you look closely, it does bring me a worry that the case surface isn’t as scratch resistant as I had hoped which frankly is not great to find out about an otherwise flawless accessory. Though it protects the iPad’s front quite well, it does leave the rear pretty much exposed. Luckily for me, I also received an iPad ZAGG LEATHERSkin to protect the rear (check out the image gallery at the end).
There is also a neat cutout at the case bottom for iPad’s dock connector to allow charging while its inside the case. The best thing about the case is that even though it lacks a bit in shock absorption department, it does match the iPad’s aluminum color and design perfectly that makes it look truly awesome.
ZAGGMate keyboard case for iPad is a sleek and absolutely beautiful accessory which is both easy to carry and marvelous to type on and with the added special function keys, it gives you an optimal physical typing experience that no other bluetooth keyboard in the current market can beat. Highly recommended!
iTD PRODUCT RATING