We’ve had the opportunity to own every iPad and iPhone over the years, which enabled us to gain real insight into the hardware and of course how good or bad it is in real world conditions. The Smart Cover impressed us when it first launched and we loved the integration of magnets into the iPad to deliver tailored protection right out of the box, although it is fair to say this design had not been perfect.
When it comes to the Microsoft Surface tablet it had been designed with innovative protection from launch, and they not only understood what Apple did with the Smart Cover, still an option for iPad 4, but also took this a step further by offering a similar thin cover that also doubles as a keyboard. If you need to gain more insight into Microsoft Surface then you can see an internal review here, and how the iPad 4 compares to Microsoft Surface in this article.
Meet the iPad 4 keyboard cover – it is a shame that Apple hasn’t offered a totally redesigned Smart Cover with integrated keyboard, especially considering they just launched the 4th generation iPad and mini version. We did see an option that protects the back as well as the front, but this is as far as Apple took the redesign. The iPad keyboard cover is a great idea that has been available from 3rd parties for many months, although it will never be designed with the perfection seen with hardware integration, which means you’d need the tablet brand to consider this option while designing the hardware.
The Folio Cover is really good for those iPad 3, or iPad 4, users that want to have a physical keyboard and protection combined into one product, which saves space, offers flexibility, doubles as a stand, and keeps your iPad still looking stylish. The problem with a 3rd party designing such a product still remains though, and you’re never going to get something as stylish and slim as Apple would produce. Looking at the photo below of the Microsoft Surface keyboard cover, you can see how stylish and slim this is in comparison.
We’ve included a video below that showcases the ZAGGfolio iPad keyboard case, and also below this video we’ve included a review of the Microsoft Surface Touch Cover that also demonstrates how it performs when using Microsoft Word. These videos allow you to really see the differences between something designed in-house and an option designed by 3rd parties.
The Bottom-line: If you want an iPad 4 keyboard cover then you won’t have a problem finding one and the ZAGGfolio is an impressive product, but in our opinion Apple needed to launch an official iPad 4 and iPad mini keyboard cover, rather than let only 3rd parties offer such accessories.