Regular readers of this column know that I have reviewed several keyboards and cases for both iPad and Android tablets. Hands-down, the best Bluetooth keyboard I have run across is the Apple Wireless Keyboard. However, I don’t use it that often because I haven’t come across an elegant solution for integrating the keyboard and iPad in a singular case (the i.Sound Keyboard Portfolio I reviewed previously didn’t quite pass muster). Furthermore, having multiple tablets, I don’t necessarily want to have to swap a keyboard between cases for my iPad and Android tablets.img
Recently, however, I have been using a case that seems to address the issues faced by tablet users, providing good protection for your tablet while offering adequate space for all your accessories. It’s the Incase Travel Plus, which was given to me by the company. While Incase specializes in storage and carrying solutions for Apple products, the Travel Kit Plus handled several different brands of tablets.
The Travel Kit Plus places a premium on function over style, as it is easy to mistake it for a CD travel case. On the upside, this means it doesn’t scream “I’m carrying an iPad.” On the back of the case is a sleeve that fits your tablet, accessible via a zippered opening along the top edge of the case. I had no problems fitting an iPad 2, Motorola Xoom or Toshiba Galaxy Tab 10 in this space. In fact, it can even accommodate my iPad along with its ZAGGfolio for iPad 2 Keyboard Case. The sleeve is lined with faux fur and offers enough padding to protect your precious cargo. The outside of the case is made of sturdy nylon, which will protect the contents from the elements.img
On the other side of the Travel Kit Plus is double-sided storage for all of your tablet accessories. The wraparound zipper allows you to completely unfold the pack for easy access. On the same side as the tablet sleeve is a Velcro-flap enclosure for storing your wireless keyboard—the Apple Wireless Keyboard fits perfectly. It is a good idea to make sure you turn off your keyboard before putting it in the case; otherwise you run the risk of it turning on your tablet.
The other pocket, on the “flap” side of the case, has two zippered pockets. One pocket covers the entire area of the flap and the other smaller mesh pocket is divided into two compartments. These pockets provide more than enough space for your charging and sync cables, headphones, and whatever else you might need.img
The Travel Kit Plus also comes with a plastic stand that can hold a “bare” iPad at two different viewing angles. While it isn’t the sturdiest of stands, it is sufficient to hold your tablet while watching a video or typing. The stand also has a “reel” on the bottom for storing your iPad’s USB dock connector cable.
For me, the Incase Travel Kit Plus is a winner because it allows me to once again use my Apple Wireless Keyboard while going between my home and the office or when traveling. The added storage space makes it even more attractive. When on road trips, I use the case to haul my iPad and keyboard, Bluetooth headset and speakerphone for my car, cigarette lighter charger and the charging cables for my various devices. This storage space does lead to one potential turnoff—the Travel Kit Plus is a bit bulky, which means you may find it difficult to fit it in a laptop bag. Luckily, the built-in handle makes it easier to carry the case by itself. If you are a road warrior looking for a case to house your tablet, keyboard and other related accessories, the Incase Travel Kit case deserves a strong look.
Incase Travel Kit Plus
Wayne A. Thorp, CFA, is the author of “Gadget Corner.” All reviews are based on firsthand experience of the product or service. No third-party compensation is received for opinions on products, services, websites or topics. However, sometimes the author is not required by the manufacturer or their PR firm to return the product under review. In such instances, it is our policy to convey this within the review. The views and opinions expressed in these reviews are strictly those of the author. Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer or provider.