Ergonomic Cafe Arrow iPad stand review
The Arrow stand is the latest ergonomic solution from small British company Ergonomic Cafe, aimed at iPad and eBook users, and indeed is suitable for any tablet device up to 12.5mm thick. Available in silver with a black accent, or silver with white accent, it isn't the most polished, which perhaps reflects the company's modest budget. It is however, clearly designed for comfort, the innovative design includes a patent protected palm support setting at 22 degrees, five angle settings from 54 degrees to 75 degrees, and two height settings, which the makers insists offers a range of flexibility unlikely to be found elsewhere.
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Although slightly fiddly to first set up, the Arrow offers palm and wrist support when typing with a virtual keyboard, raising the iPad to a higher level in the process, one that is more easy on the eyes. Additionally, the Arrow works equally well if you can budget for an external Bluetooth compatible keyboard, the pair make the iPad a more satisfactory and productive device for doing any serious work. Tasks aside, the Arrow acts as a decent stand for more relaxing and pleasurable experiences, including watching videos, catch-up TV, Skype and FaceTime.
The manufacturers note that the stand is designed and ergonomically tested to be used at a desk, on a table, on your lap and even lying down. While true, we found it best suited to a flat surface, ideally a desktop, and you may need to remove your iPad case if it proves too bulky. In portrait mode, for instance, the flap from a heavy duty portfolio style iPad case was a distraction and a tight squeeze in landscape mode. Folded flat the Arrow is a slimline 7mm, weighing in at just 185 grams, which makes the stand portable although the supplied generic carry folder is perfunctory at best.
Add an external keyboard, and the Arrow from Ergonomic Cafe brings the iPad closer to using a laptop only with the ability to raise the screen to a much more comfortable height. Without, it still makes typing virtually a more pleasurable and productive experience, while the ability to easily view videos, documents and more is a plus.