So I’ve had my iPad for a few years now and, even though other gadgets have come and inevitably gone, I still use it for everything. I mean, it’s so versatile; playing games, browsing the internet, listening to music, stalking social media, and a 101 apps for everything in between. My only gripe would be that stupid bloody pop-up keyboard. The shift key winds me up something rotten and then having to scroll through three different layouts to find a hashtag? Forget about it. I can’t get through anything longer than a Facebook status without wishing I’d just gone and turned the desktop on.
If you’re of the same mindset, then allow me to recommend the Bridge+ Keyboard for iPad.
The Bridge+ Keyboard is, as you might expect, a keyboard, and one that you can slot your iPad into and turn it something very close to a laptop. And, boy, is it a thing of beauty. Made from a single block of aerospace grade aluminium (how cool is that?) and sporting satisfyingly chunky keys that actually move when you press them, the Brydge+ Keyboard looks like it was designed by Apple and you would be forgiven for mistaking it for a MacBook Air when closed with an iPad docked. Which brings me to the gadget’s strongest feature among a gaggle of strong features: the hinge mechanism. Where other iPad keyboards balance on a flimsy dock or just rest on a stand, the Bridge+ uses a patent pending hinge that grips the iPad firmly and allows it to be tilted forward or backwards to obtain the perfect angle for whatever you’re doing. On the underside, the hinges lift the solid base like legs on a desktop keyboard, raising it to the perfect typing angle. Unobtrusive and powerful, the hinges epitomise the keyboard’s air of ergonomic efficiency, a philosophy that is evident everywhere from the array of iPad-specific shortcut keys, including volume control, playback and brightness, to the much needed power of the built-in speaker.
Already pretty fab for watching movies or television, the need to find a pillow or handy pile of books to prop it up combined with the fairly feeble speakers made it just that little bit too inconvenient to really enjoy video apps like Netflix or BBC iPlayer, but with the solid stand, beefed up sound system and innovative controls, the Brydge+ really turns the iPad into an ideal little mini cinema, perfect for lazing in bed or taking on your travels.
The only downside I can think of here is that, once docked with an iPad, the weight jumps to just over a kilo so some of that portability is lost. Also, it doesn’t protect the back of the iPad unlike some other keyboards that might otherwise lack the Brydge+’s practicality and style. But then, let’s face it, it’s designed to turn your iPad into a laptop. If you want protection, stick it in a safe. If you want an iPad, a notebook, a mini home theatre and an incredibly stylish bit of kit, go buy a Brydge+ Keyboard. Your iPad will thank you.
The Bridge+ Keybaord is available in two aluminium models, one without speakers, and a low cost polycarbonate model with built-in speakers which frankly just looks bad-ass. All models come with a variety of shims to fit iPads 2, 3 & 4 as well as a micro USB charger and a quick-start guide.
BUY NOW FOR FATHER’S DAY!!
As you read this, Brydge+ are currently running a sale with the premium aluminium & speakers model down from £89.24 to a cracking £58.90. That’s not bad, even if you aren’t a daddy! Check out the site here for more Father’s Day bargains!