SLATE for iPad review
The SLATE - or Smart, Lightweight and Adjustable Tablet Ergonomics - is an iPad stand from UK designer John Andrews, MD at Anglesey based Ergonomic Cafe. As the full name suggests, the SLATE is focused on making using an iPad for any length, and in almost any position, a comfortable experience. The SLATE arrived with an impressive report from the Furniture Industry Research Association (FIRA), which provides independent expert services to members for over 60 years, highlighting the health benefits of using the stand.
FIRA concludes that the SLATE offers a comfortable and supportive experience by protecting user’s hands and wrists, which in our much less comprehensive tests appears to be true. Writing on an iPad often feels like a chore, tapping on a virtual keyboard for any length of time is not much fun. The SLATE offers five angle settings - 24, 33, 41, 45 and 90 degrees - to combat this. After some effort setting the stand to a suitable angle, you'll need to experiment here, typing especially is a much more pleasant and tactile experience despite the virtual keyboard. Gaming also benefited and the SLATE can also be used for simply viewing from a distance.
As well as a stand the SLATE acts as an iPad case, compatible with iPad 2 and the new iPad, which while not the prettiest on the market does an okay job of protecting your tablet on the move. You can access all the iPad's connectors while covered and users can easily operate the iPad by simply raising the case to act as a stand again. The SLATE, currently available from Posturite, lacks the finesse of other iPad stands and cases and feels very much the work of a smaller company but innovation should be applauded at a time when many options are simply rebadged from a Far East OEM supplier.
While the SLATE took a little getting used to we found the benefits of using the stand become clearer and clearer over time. Makers Ergonomic Cafe would likely capitalise on some financial investment to fine tune the stand, but for now it's a worthy option for anyone concerned about improving posture and well being while working on their iPad.