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Case or Keyboard?

Wed Apr 3, 2002 - 11:57 AM EST - By Kenneth Crandall


Product Info
Details
» Name Q-Pad
» Company tDevice
» Weight without Edge 3.5 Ounces
» Fact Sheet & User Opinions
Availability
» Q2 2002
Pricing
» $69.99

Q-Pad

Is this a keyboard or a case? Answer, Both!!

tDevice has taken two accessories for the visor and combined them into one. Currently only available for the Visor Edge (and Palm Vx) the Q-Pad incorporates both a QWERTY keyboard and number pad inside a leather folding case.

The main advantage with this product is its usability. There is no need for taking the visor out of the case and attaching a keyboard like some other products, with Q-Pad the keyboard can be used while inside the case because it is built in.

Specifications

The Q-Pad features a QWERTY keyboard with a number pad, arrow keys, and special punctuation keys. The keyboard is located in the bottom of the case and when closed covers the front of the Edge. The keyboard is sensitive to the touch and fairly accurate when typing.

The case itself is built from leather and is quite durable. The case closes from the bottom (unlike the Slipper Cases from E&B and the Vaja cases) and uses a Velcro attachment to close. The back side of the case folds back using a hinge to provide a stand for resting the Visor on a table top or desk.

The edge itself slides into a plastic “cradle like” serial attachment built into the case. This attachment secures the Edge into the case and also makes the connection between the Edge and the keyboard using the serial port. Meaning, you can’t sync/charge the Edge and use the case at the same time, you must first remove the Edge from the case to put it into the cradle.
 

Case Usability

Using the case is great! It works like all other cases and protects the Edge like any case should. The keyboard of course is an added benefit, and makes data input much quicker, especially if you aren’t too familiar with Graffiti.

Sliding the Edge into the serial attachment is simple, the Edge snaps into place to assure security. I even held the case open, upside down, and shook vigorously; the Edge stayed in place and didn’t move a bit. Taking the Edge out is just as easy; all you do is pull with a little force, and it slides out.

Users have easy access to the stylus. However, I would much rather use my finger to make selections and use the keyboard to type, than use the stylus.

The hinged stand to prop the Edge up when typing defiantly helps when typing using a flat surface. In fact, I tend to leave my edge in the case propped up in this position on my desk instead of leaving it in the cradle. This way, I get better use of the keyboard, and especially the calculator function with the number pad. The only problem I have with the stand is the strength. The hinge on my version is a little weak and therefore collapses sometimes when I tap the screen or press a hotkey. However, I have been told that tDevice realized this problem and is making the hinge stronger.

Using modules with this case is impossible since the Edge requires the use of the adapter. There is no way to close the case if the adapter is attached to the edge. The only time the use of modules would be feasible, is when the case is open and the stand is down.



Keyboard Usability >>

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