MSI has long pushed the boundaries of invention with its ever-evolving range of laptops but it has now pulled off a world first with the new MSI Creative 17.
Clamcase for iPad Pro 9.7-inch
Turn your iPad into a proper laptop
- Very sturdy
- Robust keys
- Good battery life
The best way we've yet seen to turn your iPad Pro into a laptop.
Price$ 230.00 (AUD)
Smart cases for tablets always seem to sound much better than they are - especially when a keyboard in involved. The increased bulk and the requirement to keep them charged can be a pain.
So we were happy to see Clamcase address these issues right off the bat. The aluminium-polycarbonate keyboard-case is very solid, very light and very thin. Clipping an 9.7-inch iPad Pro (the best iPad) into it suddenly turns it into a laptop - at least in appearance.
Pairing via Bluetooth is easy. After that, maintenance is minimal: the case knows when it's shut and powers off (and on) automatically. Standby time is three months. The keys have LED backlights (which can be set to three brightness levels or turned off) and they'll stay illuminated for 6 hours on a single charge. If you leave the lights off then it will last 100 hours as a regular keyboard. We're happy that this counts as maintenance free.
The keyboard itself is very useable. The scrabble tile keys are reduced-size but we happily typed this review on it. The action is quite stiff - writing lengthy pieces might become uncomfortable, but we had few complaints. Usually when typing on the screen we keep hitting keyboard combinations which highlight whole lines and deletes them before we realise what's happened. This does away with that.
The keys need to be as robust as they feel as the keyboard can be wrapped all the way around the back of the screen to allow the tablet to be wielded In its regular manner. When this happens, the smarts within the case turn the keyboard off so you're not pressing keys behind the screen.
It's naturally a little top heavy - the iPad itself is the heaviest part of this case which, on its own, weighs 500g. But we rarely had a problem with it toppling over.
ll in all, we were impressed. It feels more sturdy and useful than Apple's own keyboard case. IIt's expensive at $230 but the quality is there to justify it.
While we were typing this, we watched a business man on a plane typing pages of notes with one finger. This case would be a godsend to him.
We still lament not having mouse compatibility with Apple's iOS. However, being able to type extensively and accurately on the iPad Pro without fiddling around with multiple, flappy covers is a boon and it wins our approval.
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Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.
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