Around this time of year resolutions are commonly made and perhaps more easily broken. With the recent release of the iPad Air 2, cases (particularly with integrated keyboards) are still difficult to obtain; yet, ZAGG’s new Slim Book ($129.99) has recently “hit the market.” However, does ZAGG’s Slim Book live up to its promises in the New Year?
Slim Book is composed of two pieces: a black, hard plastic shell (with openings for all of the ports, buttons, and speakers) that snaps around the iPad Air 2 and a separate two-toned (silver and black) keyboard that locks in place via magnets.
The keyboard component features an integrated lithium-polymer battery that ZAGG reports can last for two years between charges (this varies depending on the amount of time used daily and how long the backlight is active). In line with ZAGG’s claims, after several weeks of constant use, this author has been unable to completely discharge this device. A Micro USB cable is included when one does need to recharge the device, but one needs to provide his/her own USB adapter.
Importantly, the spacing of the keys makes typing fluid and pain free. Uniquely, this product’s keyboard also includes the following function keys (from left to right): Home, Lock, Siri, Search, International Keyboards, Hide/Display Keyboard, Previous Track, Play/Pause, Next Track, Mute, Volume Down, Volume Up, Bluetooth, and Power On/Off.
ZAGG’s Slim Book communicates to the iPad Air 2 with Bluetooth. Pairing of the devices is easier accomplished by powering on the Slim Book and then in iOS 8 going to Settings -> Bluetooth -> and selecting “ZAGG Slim Book” from the options.
Since the Slim Book is two pieces, the following four positions are possible:
1. Traditional keyboard orientation (similar to a laptop)
2. Book-like orientation (keyboard is folded behind the iPad)
3. Video orientation (keyboard acts as a base and props up the iPad like a picture frame)
4. Solely the iPad (keyboard component is not attached)
Of note, this keyboard case only protects the iPad Air 2 from mild scratches or drops. For additional protection of one’s iPad, ZAGG’s Rugged Book for the iPad Air 2 ($149.99, currently not yet available at time of press) may be a more appropriate option.
The Slim Book’s hinge is exceptionally strong and even allows for approximately 130 degrees of motion. The only potential downside with the hinge is that typing can occasionally cause the iPad to wiggle. While the aforementioned is not a “deal breaker,” it can be a slight distraction.
ZAGG’s Slim Book achieves its New Year’s resolutions by not only functioning well as a keyboard, but, also, by providing more flexibility with its four orientations than other keyboard cases for the iPad.
Rating: 4 out of 5