My iPad isn’t my first tablet but strangely enough it’s the first tablet I’ve actually carried daily. It was becoming a bit bothersome to pack my laptop to travel just so I can turn out some articles and try to keep up with my classes. It’s been great for surfing, streaming and a few article edits here and there but the lack of keyboard made it pretty impossible to function for an extended length of time relying solely on my tablet. After several different attempts at finding the perfect keyboard I came across the ClamCase Pro – did it solve my dilemma? Let’s see:
Design & Style
As the name suggests the Clam Case Pro is a clamshell – style keyboard case. It has an adjustable; 360 degree hinge that lets you position your iPad in any imaginable angle. You can opt to use it as a laptop, touch screen stand or even flip it all the way back and simply use it as a tablet. The versatility is really helpful when streaming media or if you have back issues like me and sometimes only the weirdest positions provide real relief.
Looking at the pictures on the site the case appears to be all aluminum but that is not the case. The Case is actually an off white polycarbonate shell and the enclosure (keyboard portion) is aluminum making it look almost identical to the MacBook Air when used in laptop mode. Although the case is real thin and light out the box, when you insert the iPad it adds a bit of heft to it. Still thin when all put together but it almost weighs in at 3 lbs.
Features in a Clam Shell
- 360 Degree Hinge,
- Bluetooth Connectivity,
- Long lasting rechargeable lithium-ion battery:
100 hours uninterrupted in use time
6 Months standby time
120 minutes for full charge
Battery Indicator Press to display remaining life
- Full Qwerty Keyboard
- Auto wake and sleep.
- Aluminum enclosure and polycarbonate shell provide unmatched durability.
The hinge is pretty stiff. Out the box I attempted to fold it all the way back to no avail which initially made me nervous. When I inserted the iPad I was able to fold it back with no issues. It doesn’t feel like it will loosen and become flimsy after continuous use.
Not all keyboards are created equal but I find that for its petite frame the keyboard is easy to use. It does have the standard iPad specific keys such as Home, Search, Copy, Paste, Screen Lock, and Media Controls along the top row. As with most iPad Keyboards it connects via Bluetooth. Charging is done via power adapter or USB connection, Micro USB to USB cable included. There is also a Power Toggle to quickly and easily power on/off keyboard with manual power switch. Notification LEDs lights provide information on battery life, pairing, power activation, charge and Caps Lock. The lithium-ion battery and Bluetooth 3.0 chip allows for months of use on one single charge making the ClamCase very easy to use.
The keyboard base looks like it’s missing a trackpad so I found myself naturally swiping my fingers where the trackpad will be. It took a little while but I got used to it not being there. I am able to type without feeling cramped or hitting multiple keys accidentally. An issue I’ve had on other tablet keyboards. I like the heft because it has an added stability when typing in my office break room or even just on my lap.
I was able to tote it around in my tote purses, my smaller messenger bags I now carry and after about an hour or so walking around in the city I did feel like I needed to unload my purse. Keep in mind I had way too many other gadgets in there so it did make me scale back on my day-to-day carry alongs.
When using it as a tablet the keys are fully exposed and you end up with a handful of keys – this can be a bit bothersome to some. The iPad is easy to pop in and out of the case if that is a problem for you making the exposed keys a non issue. For the last month I’ve been using the ClamCase Pro, I’ve come to especially appreciate that it makes my iPad almost unrecognizable. When the ClamCase Pro is completely closed it looks like a laptop. You won’t see any Apple logos it is completely laden with ClamCase insignia. Not only is the most productive iPad keyboard I’ve been able to use having a built-in sort of “theft deterrent” makes it well worth the price tag of $169 to me. Considering how much I paid for my iPad and the portability of my iPad over trekking my MacBook Pro while traveling is priceless to me.
The ClamCase Pro is compatible with iPad’s 2, 3 and 4. If you have the original iPad they have their original ClamCase keyboard available as well. Head over to ClamCase.com to purchase the ClamCase Pro shipping is free, and as an added Father’s Day bonus they will also pay your sales tax for you :)