typad-10 The Gadgeteer has a review of an interesting-looking gizmo, the tyPad wireless Bluetooth keyboard case for the iPad. This $129.95 case combines a binder-style case and a Bluetooth keyboard, effectively turning the iPad into a laptop. (Although the review doesn’t mention Sena, the picture of this keyboard is identical to the Sena case/keyboard combo Paul mentioned at the end of August.)

The review notes that the case is sturdy enough, and has a number of useful features, such as the ability to rotate the iPad 90 degrees to type in either a landscape or a portrait configuration. But it also notes a few drawbacks, such as the lack of a right Shift key (which essentially kills the device’s appeal for me, a 100-word-per-minute habitual touch typist).

Still, the idea of a keyboard case for the iPad is appealing, and I’m sure sooner or later someone will get it right. It would be nice to have the versatility of a tablet/keyboard combo that can be separated to use just the tablet by itself.

500x_smartbook Speaking of which, Gizmodo has an interesting piece on a “Voltron of computers”—a netbook that practically explodes into a tablet with capacitive touchscreen, a mini-tablet-style voice-over-IP videophone, a keyboard, a USB keychain, and a little USB-to-HDMI dongle. It runs on an ARM Cortex-A8 processor with 512 MB of RAM, 256 MB of onboard flash storage, and 802.11b/g/n wifi, and reportedly offers the ability to change OSes at the flip of a switch.

The $549 pricetag seems a little hefty compared to full-fledged Intel-based desktops and netbooks, but on the other hand you’re getting about three different devices for the price of one. It might be worth a look.


  1. I got the first iteration of this device, known as a “Touchbook” nearly a year ago. Technical support has been quite poor, and it is obvious that the company spent most of their resources developing this new product rather than supporting the existing user base.

    Power management is non-existent, networking stability is poor, the software has not been updated since the beginning of January. Lots of Touchbook users are unhappy at this point.

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