Review: Zagg Slim Book for 9.7” iPad Pro
Zagg's Slim Book for the 9.7" iPad Pro ($130) is a slighter version of its Rugged Book, which we've seen in the past. As one might expect, Slim Book is a bit more svelte, acting as both a case and a keyboard for the 9.7" iPad Pro. The case can be removed from the keyboard or the two can be used in conjunction — when linked, Slim Book can be used in separate orientations for typing, watching videos, or "book mode," which folds the keyboard behind the tablet for normal use. Interestingly, Slim Book eschews the iPad Pro's Smart Connector, as its keyboard connects via Bluetooth. Zagg claims the keyboard can provide up to two years of regular use between charges, but a micro-USB cable is still included.
Slim Book’s case is basically just a plastic shell, with no lip around the screen. Buttons are left exposed, as well. It won’t provide too much extra protection in case of a drop. It becomes a bit sturdier when inserted into the keyboard, where it stays put using magnets. Like Rugged Book, users are able to adjust Slim Book to any viewing angle up to 135 degrees when in typing mode, and the multi-angle hinge proves useful in video viewing mode, as well.
Like many iPad keyboards, Slim Book offers a good, but not great typing experience. The keyboard houses plastic keys in an aluminum enclosure — the keys are bouncy and responsive, but many users will feel a bit cramped by the size of the keyboard when compared to a MacBook. While we would have liked to see Zagg make Slim Book a Smart Connector-compatible keyboard, the company may have considered the costs too high, and not worth the potential benefits. In any case, connecting via Bluetooth with Slim Book wasn’t an issue for us. Slim Book also features backlit keys, and users may change the brightness — a nice touch.
In the end, Slim Book is on fairly even terms with Zagg’s similar Rugged Book. While Rugged Book is heavier and $20 more expensive, it also offers better protection. We’d give the slight edge to Slim Book, though, for both its lower price and a slightly more refined overall experience.