Accessorizing your iPad for cheap!
- The Apple iPad
Okay, this isn't a real iPad. It's a mockup. We put together this "unofficial iPad" in order to go visit some local stores and see if we could find some worthy and inexpensive accessories.
- Staples Chrome Study Stand
Retailing at just $6.99 this chrome study stand was our find of the day. With a rubber-tipped holder, the stand provided a steady iPad-proportioned base that did not overly occlude the screen and that worked in both portrait and landscape mode. Best of all, the stand folds -- not flat, mind you but nearly flat. (The two front tips still stick out.) This makes it especially easy to carry in a backpack.
- Staple's Study Stand: Landscape
The study stand worked well in that all-important landscape movie-watching orientation, and would also work as a charging base using minimal desktop space.
- Study Stand: Portrait Mode
he challenge of the morning was less to find a good landscape holder than a reliable portrait one. The iPad's weight and height disqualified many stands due to poor portrait-orientation performance.
- 8" acrylic decorative plate holder
Falling into our number two spot for sturdiness and multi-orientation usage was this acrylic plate holder, meant for display use. Retailing at just a couple of bucks, the plate holder offered good screen viewing but at a slightly more awkward angle than the study stand. Also, the plate holder did not fold at all, making it a non-portable solution.
- I.E. Quilted Netbook Computer Case
Available in a number of colors, this $15 quilted neoprene case seemed tailor made for the iPad, assuming you actually want to buy a case for your iPad, that is. Our jury's still out on the case/no-case decision. If you're a case person though, this Office Depot find proved to be a stylish, inexpensive choice.
- Targus Eco Laptop Case
At $30, the Staples Targus Eco case fit our iPad but didn't seem especially budget friendly.
- Targus Sport
Another 10.2" netbook case (this at Staples), the Targus Sport fit the iPad well and was slightly cheaper than its Eco sibling.
All said and done, the iPad mock-up fit nicely into my normal backpack. Cost? Zero. It's already part of my day-to-day lifestyle.
- The iBag
In response to a request by an unnamed TUAW coblogger, and in honor of our own TJ Luoma, we present the iBag. Cost? Almost nothing. Why spend more for "Trendy Digital"? The iBag protects your iPad from mildly inclement weather and professors with spitting issues.