iPads are wonderful devices. You can work or play on an iPad, at least until your hands get tired of holding it. There are a lot of stands available for iPads, all with their own pluses and minuses. (The biggest minus for some of those stands is the exorbitant price!) Many of you reading this probably are wondering if that iPad stand you bought will work for the new iPad 2, or maybe you’ve jumped ship and switched over to one of the many Android tablets. Arkon has a Universal Tablet Stand that works for the iPad, and it will work for the iPad 2, Android tablets, and even dedicated ebook readers. Arkon was kind enough to send one of their universal tablet stands to The Gadgeteer for review.
The tablet stand is made of plastic with metal screws. It’s available in black or gray; I received the black. All folded up, the stand is 7” X 1” X 1”. It weighs about 3 ounces, so it should hardly be noticeable in your gear bag.
Arkon lists this stand multiple times in their catalog. It’s listed as the iPad Travel Stand for Apple iPad & iPad 2, the Samsung Galaxy Tab Travel Stand, and the Blackberry Playbook Stand, but they are all the same item.
There are three joints in the stand. The biggest joint is at one end of the folded stand. It ratchets into a multitude of angles, and it determines the tilt of the iPad or other tablet.
The top piece has another joint at the midpoint of its length. This joint moves through a full 180 degrees, and it supports the back of the tablet. There’s a piece of rubbery foam glued to the top half of this piece to protect the tablet from scratches.
The bottom piece opens up into a V-shape to form the support legs. Each leg has a notch molded into it to support the bottom of the tablet. More of the black foam is used here to protect the tablet. The bottoms of the legs have the black foam glued to the bottom to prevent slipping.
I could easily bend the tablet stand into configurations to hold my iPad at a variety of angles in either the horizontal or vertical orientation. I could even form a stand that would work for typing on the landscape virtual keyboard. The typing configuration was just a bit wobbly, because the back of the iPad was supported only in the middle. It did work well if I avoided pounding too hard on the keyboard.
The Arkon Universal Tablet Stand worked beautifully with my iPad. It also worked with my Sony PRS-650 reader. I even managed to form it into a stand that worked with my iPod touch (2nd gen), but only when the iPod was in portrait mode.
The Arkon Universal Tablet Stand is a great solution for people who don’t like having to buy all new accessories each time they buy a new device and who don’t want to have to carry a different set of accessories for each device. At $17.95, it’s also a great stand for people who don’t want to pay almost as much for the stand as for the device itself. It will be a great addition to your gear bag.