Review: ZAGG Slim Book for iPad Pro 9.7

Pull the iPad to use it without the keyboard.


The case protects both the front and back of the iPad. The iPad is inserted into the lid of the case, which serves as a case for the iPad when it’s removed from the keyboard base.

That’s my favorite function of the Slim Book. The tablet can be lifted out of the magnetic hinge of the case to leave the keyboard behind. To use as a laptop just drop the iPad in the case back into the hinge. The case adds little bulk and weight to the skinny iPad Pro.

imageThe lid is a black carbonate and offers protection for the back of the iPad Pro. It’s nice to know that the expensive tablet won’t get scratched in the gear bag.

The base unit is the same material on the bottom and silver aluminum on the keyboard side. The black chiclet keys are like Mac keys, although slightly smaller.

Typing on the keyboard feels like any laptop. The travel is tactile and spacing is good between keys. Rapid typing is easy to do on this keyboard, and lots of text entry is comfortable.

The keys are backlit and support several colors and intensities. This is a handy feature, although it hits the battery hard. The top row of keys are control keys for the iPad, like Home, Volume Up/Down, and media controls.

The battery level can be checked by hitting the Fn key in addition to the key next to it with a battery symbol. The power button flashes when this is done, with the number of flashes indicating the battery level.

The Slim Book can be used as a laptop when opened. The lid can be pushed back to the exact viewing angle desired, up to 145 degrees.

In addition to laptop mode, tablet mode can be used as previously described. Pulling straight up on the lid removes it for such use and simply putting back when done.

The ZAGG Slim Book has quickly become my favorite keyboard case for the iPad Pro. It’s easy to use, has a good keyboard, and supports using the iPad as the tablet it is.

It is available from ZAGG for $129.99.


3 thoughts on “Review: ZAGG Slim Book for iPad Pro 9.7

  • August 16, 2016 at 11:39 pm

    I’ve been using this keyboard with my 12.9″ Pro and it has completely transformed how I use my iPad. I upgraded from an older iPad model to the larger 12.9″ screen, in part because on area where I found the iPad difficult to use was as a remote access desktop. Having to use the pop-up keyboard made anything but the most rudimentary tasks difficult. Sure, I could have added a Bluetooth keyboard, but the larger iPad really gives a good argument to replace a laptop.

    I considered a MacBook or Air, but neither offers a cellular data option and adding and carrying extra attachments for cellular access would limit it’s portability and my desire to carry all of that around. Laptops usually are accompanied with cases and all manner of accessories. Here, the iPad shines, because with the Zagg keyboard, it’s lighter than a laptop, has both cellular and wifi connections, and the keyboard makes its own case. At most, all that’s needed is the lightning cable and power plug.

    My first reaction to the Zagg was “Wow, this is heavy. Instead of giving it a two-year battery life (one hour per day of actual keyboard use without backlight), they could have made it lighter.” However, I realize now that enough weight is needed to counterbalance the iPad even when it is adjusted to very obtuse angles. This keyboard holds the screen at any angle you’d want.

    On the 12.9″ iPad, the keyboard is an exact size match for a standard MacBook keyboard–no adjustment needed. What’s even better for the iPad are the ability to use the arrow keys (perfect for navigating around text boxes to edit text without needing to touch in just the right place), the Escape key works like the home button, and other function keys provide shortcuts to the Home double-click, search, music controls, and my favorite: Command-Tab to switch among applications just like on my Mac.

    BTW, if you like the backlight, go ahead and use it–Zagg rates the battery for two months with one hour of keyboard usage every day with the backlight on. Considering I charge my iPad nearly every day, it’s no big deal. I don’t use the backlight, however, though I probably use the keyboard more than an hour each day. I have no idea how long the battery will last because it’s still in the green zone after more than a month. My guess is it’ll be at least a year.

  • August 17, 2016 at 12:46 am

    Hi James
    Thanks for reviewing this. Compared to the Apple and Logitech Create keyboard for the 9.7 Pro how does it stack up.

  • August 17, 2016 at 12:55 am

    Also, Create has an advantage in having room for Apple Pencil. Added your site to 1Blocker whitelist 🙂


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