I had the original iPad Pro but found the size a bit of a challenge. When the smaller 9.7″ iPad Pro was released, I jumped on it. It works with the Apple Pencil but is the same size and weight as the iPad Air 2. The $129.99 ZAGG Slim Book Ultra-Slim Tablet Keyboard makes my favorite iPad even better.
I have reviewed prior iterations of the ZAGG Slim Book Ultra-Slim Tablet Keyboard and Detachable Case and always been a fan. This one keeps all the things I loved about that keyboard case and delivers it in a design specifically created to work with the 9.7″ iPad Pro.
Like prior models this keyboard case offers four different modes. It is a traditional keyboard case that lets you use the iPad as you would a laptop, it offers a mode for watching videos with the keyboard out of the way, it functions like a protective folio case that turns into a tablet shell, and it offers a book mode for times when you are using the iPad to read a book or magazine.
Best of all the keyboard easily detached from the protective shell so you can go from one mode to another while still keeping your iPad protected.
- Case Mode: Case mode protects your iPad from scratches and dings while you’re on the go.
- Keyboard Mode: Keyboard mode makes typing fast and natural by offering the largest typing area and backlit island-style keys that respond just like a traditional keyboard
- Book Mode: Book mode allows you to reverse your iPad into a convenient, comfortable reading mode that keeps your iPad and keyboard protected while you read.
- Video Mode: Video mode uses the Slim Book’s unique hinge to secure your iPad at virtually any viewing angle so you can easily share videos with everyone.
The hinge in the keyboard side of the case is right enough to offer a variety of angles. In fact, it offers 135° of viewing angles so the experience is similar to using a laptop.
And the powerful battery can last up to two years per charge. Sure, that number is based on one hour of use per day, and I’ll be using it enough that there is no way I’ll get a full two years. Still, the battery is powerful enough that I won’t be charging it all the time. I love that.
Here’s what ZAGG has to say about the Slim Book:
The ZAGG Slim Book wireless Bluetooth keyboard is the ultrathin solution to your mobile typing needs. Its unique hinge secures your tablet at virtually any viewing angle and allows for a convenient video and book mode, or folds flat for a protective case mode. The Slim Book is powered by one of the industry’s most powerful batteries that keeps it going for up to two years between charges.
From a first glance, the Slim Book looks like the version for the iPad Air and iPad Air 2. In addition to the cutout for the Lightning port and earphone plug, the plastic shell had cutouts for the speakers. Thing is, while previous iPads had just two speakers in the bottom the 9.7″ iPad Pro has four speakers. I wondered what ZAGG would do to accommodate the additional speakers since having that number of cutouts would likely have weakened the case.
The company did something brilliant. Instead of adding two cutouts they got rid of them and made four spots that direct the sound coming from each of the four speakers to the front of the iPad.
The design works well, lets you get benefit from all of the speakers, and it makes for an even stronger shell; well done ZAGG.
Of course, the most important aspect of a keyboard case is… The keyboard. Fortunately, the keyboard is a pleasure to type on. The keys have nice play, are decently spaced, and they can handle pretty much anything you throw at them. There are plenty of specialty keys that let you get the most of your iPad, and perhaps best of all the keyboard is backlit. In all, the keyboard is great as a keyboard. Add in the fact that the iPad shell does a great job of protecting your tablet, and you have a great product. And that doesn’t even take into account the fact that the Slim Case offers four modes of use.
In all, the keyboard is an absolute winner that adds amazing functionality to the 9.7″ iPad Pro. The only downside of the keyboard case is the fact that the hard shell covers the three point charging and connecting point. That won’t be a bummer for most people, but considering the fact that my favorite stand for the new iPad utilizes these charging points, I am a bit disappointed. That disappointment is not, however, enough to keep me from using the keyboard case. I love the protection and functionality it offers and, because of that, I am using it as my main case and keyboard now.
Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample of the ZAGG Slim Book for iPad Pro 9.7″.
What I Like: Hard shell protects the iPad; Keyboard works beautifully; Keyboard is backlit; Case offers four different modes
What Needs Improvement: Hard shell covers the new connection system found on both iPad Pro models