on March 30, 2012
I have an iPad3. I bought both this, the Kensington KeyFolio Pro 2 Removable Keyboard, Case and Stand for iPad 2 and New iPad (K39512US), and the Zagg ZAGGfolio with Keyboard for The New iPad 3G (FOLCARSLV101). The Kensington I bought from Amazon and the Zagg I bought from Best Buy. So this is a comparitive review of both products used with the iPad 3.
First the Kensington KeyFolio Pro 2 since thats the product I'm posting this reviw on. I'm typing this part with it now.
This one seems to have a better overall design than the ZAGGfolio and is capable of being set up in a larger number of positions. KeyFolio design advantages:
- Significantly less expensive than the ZAGGfolio.
- Easier to open.
- Seems to stay closed more securely with the keyboard removed.
- Easier to insert the iPad in the case.
- The iPad3 seems to be held more securely in this case.
- There's a stylus holder! This is very important if you ever use a stylus.
- The keyboard is held in securely by strong magnets, but is much easier to remove from the case.
- The USB port for charging the keyboard is exposed while inserted in the case so you don't have to partially remove the keyboard to charge it.
- The iPad panel of the case has velcro on the bottom so, with the keyboard removed, you can stand the iPad up at any angle from vertical to a very low angle that's suitable for typing on the on-screen keyboard if you want. Unlike the Zagg, there are no fixed notches that limit you to 2 or so different stand angles. This continuous range of possible angles is VERY useful.
- While neither case is very good for typing when placed on your lap, the KeyFolio is better for this than the Zagg.
- With the keyboard still inserted, the KeyFolio is more comfortable to hold when you fold the cover over to use the iPad like a tablet. It's not that much better but is it easier to avoid pressing the keys with the back resting on your hand. Since its also easier to remove the keyboard, it's easier to switch to using the tablet like this without the keyboard.
- The KeyFolio keyboard has display brightness control keys while the Zagg doesn't. It also has a caps lock light, will allow you to type F1-F12, and has a couple of extra keys like Pause/Break. This may not matter for the iPad but makes the keyboard more useful if you ever pair it with a Windows machine device or something. This keyboard also has a separate Delete and Backspace as well as an Insert key.
- Unlike some photos show, there doesn't seem to be any proper way to rotate the iPad into the portrait orientation while using the keyboard. You can take the iPad out and sort of stand it up being held by the bottom flap of the holder, but this doesnt hold it very securely.
- Currently I seem to be having some sort of problem where the left Shift key is interfering with the Z key. If I try to type ZAGG then I get Zagg because for some reason, Shift-Z essentially deactivates the Shift key even if you continue to hold down the shift key. (Releasing the shift and holding it down again, after typing Shift-Z, fixes the problem as does using the right Shift key.) The right Shift key doesn't seem to have this problem with neighboring keys. I'm unsure if this Shift-Z thing is a design problem or just a random manufacturing defect in my particular keyboard.
- This is minor, but the Command key is lacking the little curly corner command key symbol.
- As people have mentioned, the "new car smell" from the outgassing on the KeyFolio, right after you remove it from the box, is rather strong. I would expect this to go away once all the residue has evaporated and I plan to place it near an open window, with the keyboard removed and all surfaces exposed to air, to speed this up.
Now the ZAGGfolio. I'm typing this part using it. Here are its advantages over the KeyFolio:
The overall design of the case is not that good, but it seems to be more durable and capable of better protecting the iPad. The keyboard is also a little larger and seems more solidly constructed.
- The hard plastic of the case is thicker, harder, and would seem to offer more protection. The KeyFolio isn't that bad but the Zagg is just more durable. Overall the ZAGGfolio construction is bit more solid.
- The keys on the keyboard are larger than the ones on the KeyFolio keyboard. The Space bar and modifier keys on the bottom row are also maybe 30% taller than the other keys. Overall the keyboard is larger but neither is a full-size keyboard.
- The Zagg keyboard can be used as a stand for the iPad with the iPad removed from the case.
- Because you can use the keyboard as a stand, you can stand the iPad up in portrait orientation though you can only do this if you remove the iPad from the case.
- Overall the Zagg keyboard is more solidly constructed though both keyboards are made of plastic. The Zagg keyboard is also a little larger but I don't know if this is for a larger battery or just to accomodate the built-in iPad stand.
- The Zagg keyboard has a "Globe" key in the lower left that can be used to switch the keyboard language. If there's any way to do this with the KeyFolio keyboard then I don't know what it is.
- While lacking brightness controls, the Zagg keyboard has dedicated Cut/Copy/Paste keys. Personally I think this is pointless because the standard Command-X/C/V key combos work on both keyboards and I'm much more used to those anyway.
- The Zagg has the auto on/off magnet that sleeps or wakes the iPad when you open/close the case.
- The outside of the thing is covered with this fake carbon fiber "skin" sticker that looks cheap-o and some have reported that it's prone to peeling off.
- The case doesn't feel like it clips securely closed if you try to close it with the keyboard removed. So I would not try to carry it around without the keyboard inserted.
- See "KeyFolio" advantages above for other shortcomings that I wouldn't necessarily consider outright problems.
Both cases have:
- Cutouts for all of the standard ports, buttons, speaker, camera, etc
- Enough space around the dock connector to support my larger-than-normal 3rd party cable.
- Bluetooth keyboards that have a "connect" button for easy obvious pairing.
- Once paired, both keyboards connect instantly after being powered on. You will not be able to get your hands on the keys before they connect.
- Both have special keys for the home key, slide show, mute/volume, audio player control, on-screen keyboard show/hide, search, and lock.
- Both have Ctrl/Option/Command and arrow keys.
- Some way to stand the ipad up for typing or viewing video/etc, and a way to fold the keyboard side of the cover behind the tablet for tablet-only use.
- Use a standard micro USB port for charging.
- A certain look. The Kensington looks more "white collar" and the Zagg looks more "blue collar". I don't consider either of these styles to be better than the other so I've noted it here to point it out.
- Both seem about as bulky. Maybe the KeyFolio seems a little thinner just because it's softer.
Aside from the weird Shift-Z problem that might just be a defect in my particular unit, I like the Kensington KeyFolio better. The smaller keys don't really bother me, I REALLY want that stylus holder, I like the ease of removing the keyboard, the usb charging port is exposed without removing the keyboard, the velcro angle stand with infinite positions is very useful. I don't care if I can stand the iPad up on the keyboard alone with no case. The iPad seems to be held more securely (not as loose). If I need to type on my lap, this one is easier to do that with. The Kensington is also less expensive and overall seems to be a better value. Lastly, the keyboard seems to be more suitable for use with other devices if needed.
So if that stuff is what's important to you then I'd get the Kensington KeyFolio.
If you need larger keys, more solid (but not quite milspec) protection for tougher environments, better support for portrait orientation, never use a stylus, really want that auto sleep/wake magnet, and/or like the tough-looking style (vs the office management organizer style), then get the ZAGGfolio.
UPDATE: See comments section for a report on wear-and-tear after a month of daily use.
on December 12, 2011
With only one previous review on the item, I was skeptical, of course. It arrived today and I love it, for all the reasons the previous reviewer stated. Love the stand-up feature. Love the removable keyboard, as I have movable or external keyboards for all my devices, including laptops and HP Jornada (anyone remember those?). Keyboard is small but has nice feel and functionality for my medium size fingers; might not suit big fingers. Once the IPad is in the case, the Apple screen Smart Cover can still be attached (albeit from the bottom edge). I'm obsessive compulsive about protecting my screens because they're the things you can't replace. And I'm obsessive about having my accessories, especially the protective ones, available: for example, should I need to remove the IPad from the case. Best of all in my estimation is its multi-functionality: case, keyboard, and stand. Attractive looking black case, too. A very nice Kensington product!
on February 29, 2012
I want to set the record straight on this product since there are alot of people that are complaining about stupid stuff that does not have anything to do with what people want this for.
1. The product is awesome with the bluetooth connection. It connects very easy one touch and a couple of blinks from the from your iPad and then you are rolling.
2. I have gotten a lot of comments about how it looks and how easy it is to carry everything all in one place.
3. Access to all of the slots on your iPad is open and easy to reach.
4. iPad fits in the compartment of the case very easy and will not just fall out on its own.
5. Keyboard is very quick to respond like a regular computer when you type. No, it is not to small on the keys, buttons does not just pop off, or sticks while typing.
6. Battery life on this keyboard is great due to it does not run dead quickly or takes long to charge.The great feature that people have forgot to mention is that the keyboard has a self-power saver. It cuts it self off to save power.
7. Shipping was very quick and only took made 3 days to get here.
Now to something that is true and not true, the smell. There is a very strong smell once you open the product which is in a bag inside the box. The smell does go away after a while.
Well that is all I have right now will repost if I find something different other than that go ahead and purchase this item because it has some other cool features on the keyboard that you might like. Enjoy
on March 23, 2012
There is a design flaw that Kensington admits in this product. The product is advertised as being compatible with the Apple magnetic cover which allows auto sleep/wake. The sleeve design is 180 degrees backwards and when the iPad is inserted into the sleeve, the Apple magnetic cover will not work. If you reverse the iPad and insert it the other way, the magnetic cover will work fine but the camera and button cut-outs will then be 180 degrees out of alignment.
I contacted tech support this morning and they were shocked! They agree that it is a design mistake and cannot explain how it happened. They promised to get back to me by Monday. The only "fix" possible is replacement of the case with a redesigned model. This problem was unknown to them until this morning (3/23/12) according to the tech supervisor.
I will up date this review on Monday (3/26/12) when they promised to get back to me.
OK Final word from Kensington [3/28/12] is that they made a mistake in advertising the case as a "smart case" and stating in advertising and packaging that: "Magnetic cover enables wake/sleep mode automatically."
They did not offer a replacement or refund but said they would send me a 50% discount coupon for a future purchase on their website. Great! Items on their are twice the price of the same item on Amazon.
Thankfully, I purchased my item from Amazon. Amazon has offered a full refund including shipping both ways.
Kensington made up excuses and made incorrect misleading excuses for a week before they admitted that they made a "mistake" in their advertising. I just read another review from 1/21/12 that complained of the same issue of Kensington falsely claiming that their "Magnetic cover enables wake/sleep mode automatically." [See 1 Star review [By NvrAzBad above] Kensington DID KNOW when dealing with me about the false claim but denied it! [See 1 Star review by By NvrAzBad above]. I have lowered my review to 1 Star. Kensington dealt with my issue in bad faith. That is dishonorable. Their word is untrustworthy. Shame on them!!
on January 2, 2012
I am a frequent traveler and needed something that would turn my Ipad2 into a mini laptop for use on the planes, Airports, etc. After a week long search on the net, I finally choose this case. With only two reviews, it seemed like a risk, but this case has proven what it can do.. What I like about it the most, is that I can remove the keyboard, keep it anywhere and it would type, the connectivity is great, you dont need to go through lots of clicks, just turn it on, and it is working.. love the way of its stable standing.. A total bargain for the price....
on January 12, 2012
I looked around for an iPad case with keyboard and I had a few criteria. First, I wanted something that had a removable keyboard, and preferably one on the larger size. Second, I wanted the keyboard to be supercompatible -- not buggy and weird. Third, I wanted it to have an adjustable screen angle. Fourth, I wanted it to look good.
The first keyfolio I came across that seemed to fit the bill was the Poetic, but there was a warning that there was no way to secure the flap that held your iPad in (one guy had his come slipping out and it broke), and the way it propped up looked fairly unstable (like a picture frame). The KHOMO appeared identical but without the "no security" warning. But the name! Sheesh. I'd be taking this to work meetings, and the large label ... well, not everyone is mature.
Then I saw the Kensington, and while it looked new and untested, it seemed to have what I wanted. It does! The keypad works great. No issues at all. And it's larger than my boss's Zagg case keypad. And it's removable, but not so easily so that it slides around while you're working. The screen angle adjusts -- within limits, but that's a step up from other cases. And it looks good. Not great, or flashy, but it'll do. And you can lay it flat and pull your stylus out of the handy pen loop when you're using it to take notes that way.
The security issue, unfortunately, does exist with this case. The flap that tucks in around your iPad does not have velcro or a snap or what have you, so you have to be vigilant when you're carrying it around. I experimented with the iPad out, pushing it from the inside, and it seems the material on the flap and the interior back of the case have a good amount of friction, so I'm not too terribly worried -- you should be pretty cautious and conscientious when you're handling a piece of expensive electronics as a rule, right?
But that is really the only failing I can come up with after two weeks of use. The holes for the cameras and ports all line up. The keypad charger cord fits your iPad charger plug. And the price, compared to what is on the market, is right.
In all, I'm very pleased with my purchase and recommend it highly. The only ways I see to improve it is to work on the flap/security and to get some snappy colors going.
on March 22, 2012
I bought this case to use with my New iPad, and I'm very glad I did. First I'll address some criticisms I read in some of the other reviews. Some people have complained about the smell. While I do notice it if I put it up close enough to my nose, its hardly a deal breaker and I'm sure it will fade away over time. I didn't find it to be nearly as strong or offensive as some people have indicated.
Next, the case itself. I noticed a few people complained that it didn't hold the ipad in securely. All I can say is that those people must not have secured it properly. There is a flap that wraps around the ipad and secures it in place when it is in the case. I held it upside down and shook it (over the bed, I'm not a moron lol), and I wasn't able to come close to shaking the ipad loose. There is absolutely no danger of your iPad slipping out of the case while simply walking around with it, so long as you secure it properly with the flap.
A couple of people mentioned problems with the keyboard, mine connected easily the first time, and thus far stays connected for as long as I have my iPad on. The keyboard is a little smaller than a standard kb, but if you have medium to small sized hands you should be able to touch type on it nearly as fast as you can on a full sized kb. The keys are crisp and well spaced, and being detachable it can easily be used with other devices as well. Honestly, the keyboard alone is almost worth the price of admission for this case, its really well made. And the keys will NOT scratch the iPad screen when closed. This review is being written using the Kinsington case/kb, and I don't find myself hitting backspace any more than I normally do on my laptop kb.
Thanks to Eliot Kim for pointing out that the elastic band wraps around the case to secure it shut when out and about. I hadn't noticed that (I suppose that will teach me to RTFM), but it works great and removes any danger of the case flipping open if you drop your ipad.
As for the case itself, its very well made and I will feel confident my iPad is protected. The only thing I would have added is a couple of magnets to hold it closed for walking about.
Now all that being said, this is a pretty big and bulky case. If your primay use for the ipad is lying around on the couch reading or watching movies while holding the device, you will probably be better off getting something smaller and lighter. Probably the best use for this case will be if you will be using it a lot sitting on a desk in stand mode and using the keyboard a lot, such as for work or school. I actually bought a smaller lighter case for use around the house, and since the keyboard is detachable I can still easily grab the keyboard if I find I need to do some typing even if the iPad is in the lightweight case.
Overall I highly recommend this case if you think you will be using your iPad sitting at a desk or table for any amount of time. If you're iPad is primarily for reading or watching video, you might be better off skipping the keyboard and getting something smaller and ligher. Or just do what I did and get both!
on May 15, 2012
I'm typing this on the Kensington itself, and I have to say that, 10 minutes out of the box, it's a breeze to type on. I do web development and blogging, and so having a keyboard that wasn't too tiny was of great concern. This, however, is awesome. The only part that requires a bit of practice is the right shift key (shortened so there were rooms for arrow keys, and a ".com" key I doubt I'll ever remember about).
Some other commenters complain about smell, but it's not atypical and certainly not nauseating, at least for me. I suspect it will go away soon, but I'm not really noticing it now, so it's hardly a deal breaker. Pairing was easy as pie as well. And having purchased this product with the Bamboo Stylus for iPad, Black (CS100K), it's got a great spot to store that doesn't interfere with any of the functions.
The only issue, and it's not worth returning over, is the lack of a "sleep" function. As stated by other reviewers, the iPad doesn't go to sleep when you close the "lid," so you have to be sure to press the lock button on the iPad. Or, even easier, just hit f12 on the keyboard, and it will lock your screen. So there's a tiny extra step, but honestly it takes less than a second to hit the key, and I'm sure with a day or two it will become habit.
Laying flat is a little ....weird. It lays almost flat (with the keyboard in), but it's still awkward if you're using an app (e.g. Draw Something) that only has a portrait setting. This, again, is minor, since most of the apps I use and would use with the keyboard work both horizontally and vertically.
As far as security, I followed the advice of a another reviewer and gave it a "shake test" over something soft, to see if the iPad would slide out. Sure enough, it didn't, though to note I'm using the New iPad so it's a bit thicker than the iPad 2. However, the flap that folds over the iPad holds well, and the strap that's built into the case will keep it folded shut. Naturally, I carried it around like I would a book, and so my hand folded over the only point that the iPad would slide out (which again didn't even when deliberately shaken). So it's a safe bet it won't be falling out on its own anytime soon.
I've heard a few concerns about the velcro wearing out, and I have to say even when it does, I'm not sure the case would be useless. The design of the case (with a natural crease on the folding side) leans the weight to naturally sit where it does, and while the velcro adds security, it doesn't seem to be too necessary (unless you're using it on your lap or something).
Another complaint was about the camera being partially hidden by the back hole, but that's not my experience with the iPad sitting naturally.
If you're interested, like I was, on blending the benefit of a touchscreen with the typing speed/editability of a keyboard (did I mention the stylus holder and the sleek look of the case?), you won't go wrong with this case. I'm rather picky, and this one seemed to be the best solution for me. As for the naysayers who don't want to turn their iPad into a laptop, imagine a guy like me who needs internet on the go (sim card) and something smaller than my editing laptop that I can carry around. No regrets with this one. I only gave it four stars because of the lack of auto-sleep, but really that shouldn't be a barrier to purchase, because its minor (read: really minor).
on March 11, 2012
After much reading and comparing, I chose this unit. The bad smell went away real soon. Overall, we like this product very much, and really don't want to send it back.
1. The overall construction and design are acceptable.
2. The keyboard works well (when it is connected)
1. They should have put in a 'sleep' magnet
2. They should have provided for portrait positioning
3. The keyboard is TERRIBLE at connecting/staying connected. It goes off at the slightest 'sleep' action of the iPad, or on its own, then is a nightmare to reconnect. Just pressing the 'connect' button doesn't work. Turning it off and back on sometimes works. Initiating a connect in iPad sometimes works. Multiple of each usually gets it reconnected, sometimes with one or two tries, sometimes taking many more.
I'm coming up on 30 days after receipt. I don't know what the time limit is for returning, but I am very concerned that the keyboard connect issue is getting worse. I would rather do a return as defective, rather than try to deal with a warranty issue with a company of unknown repute.
If anyone at Kensington or Amazon wishes to address this connection issue, please contact me.
I returned the first unit and ordered a new one. It came recently and all the good features mentioned here are still valid. My experience with connectivity is still HORRIBLE!
I took my Kensingtion Folio/iPad2 to class all day yesterday at the Augusta Apple store. During the day, I used the product to take notes. During the day, I had the opportunity to show it off to 3 very interested customers, and promote Amazon. (Apple doesn't sell this - - I didn't tell of the connection issues.) I had to fiddle many times to get the keyboard to connect. I asked the Apple agent to consider my iPad being at fault. He suggested we connect the iPad with my iMac's bluetooth keyboard. We paired it and it connected immediately. We did several instances of turning the iPad off/on, sleep/wake, etc. The Apple keyboard was there EVERY time without doing anything.
I packed up my iMac/keyboard in its original packaging in the big iMac box and took it to my car. I turned off my iPad and took the rest of my accessories to the car. I drove home and greeted my wife, opened the iPad to check e-mails and notes from the day. With notes up, I tried to write a small addition... I could not. Why? Because the Apple bluetooth keyboard 30 feet away out in the garage, in the car, in it's packaging boxes was still connected!
AGAIN!!! Is anyone at Amazon or Kensington listening here? Shall I send this one back too? or is this just the quality level you are happy with?
on March 20, 2012
I really think some companies just threw new iPad support on their old products. This case does not work with the iPad 3 wake on cover functionality. When the iPad 3 is in the case, the screen off button is hard to get to. I really wish this case worked as it was supposed to. I am returning it.