Padacs, $109.95 padacs.com
LONG emails and quick tweets can be a challenge for iPad users. Replacing your netbook with a tablet is even more difficult, particularly when creating long documents. In these cases, you can choose to become a touchscreen typist — or add a wireless keyboard to your gadget stash.
Australian-based Padacs has released a new iPad case that can help with the last option. The Rubata Keyboard is a keyboard and case in one, stowing the iPad in one pouch and a six-row keyboard beneath it. Once in place, it makes the iPad look like a slender laptop.
The Rubata is the company’s highest quality case to date. Its stiff-sided form is covered in black leather. Finishing details include fine stitching and easy access to ports. The case wraps around the iPad, folding into place with a magnetic seal.
The Rubata’s keys are made from hard plastic and are highly raised, a combination that mimics the construction of a regular laptop keyboard. The change is obvious as it makes typing easier and quicker than you might expect of a 24cm-long target.
This keyboard comes with plenty of common function keys — including two Shift keys, Control, Option and Command buttons — plus a row of keys that control the iPad.
These give users one-button access to locking the iPad, closing apps, selecting text, performing searches, playing photo slideshows or playing songs. Even volume controls and cut and paste tools are offered in this handy row of keys.
There are trade-offs, though. You’ll have to turn on the iPad’s Bluetooth connection, which will drain the battery faster. You’ll also have to charge the keyboard every 72 hours.
This case will add 583g to your iPad, and its stiff exterior can be difficult to fold when viewing the iPad in portrait mode.