I have an unpopular opinion of the Logitech Slim Folio Pro

Discussion in 'iPad Accessories' started by spiderman0616, Aug 12, 2019 at 7:48 AM.

  1. spiderman0616 macrumors 68040

    spiderman0616

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    #1
    I recently found myself with some gift cards to burn, so I went over to Best Buy and picked up the Logitech Slim Folio Pro for my 11" iPad Pro. I've been using the Apple Smart Keyboard Folio with a protective iStyles decal applied (because it's a smudge and dirt magnet) since launch last year, and while I have zero issues with it, I wanted to see if the Logitech lived up to the hype. I tried Logitech's solution for my 10.5" iPad Pro and hated it, but this looked a lot better designed and implemented.

    Here's my major issue with this keyboard case, and it's not something any of the thousand reviews I've read ever mentioned: the hinge is TERRIBLE and actually destroys what is otherwise a very good design. It could be that I'm just overly nitpicky, as I have never seen this issue mentioned once in any of the written reviews or YouTube videos I've seen. Be that as it may, it's a deal breaker for me. I'll explain the best I can, as the case has already been returned and I didn't think to take pictures of what I'm talking about:

    The hinge on this case is very similar to Apple's Smart Keyboard Folio, just way wider to accommodate the thicker keyboard cover and iPad Pro cover. The problem is that it is not pliable enough. When you lay the iPad down flat on a table, the stiff hinge actually pulls the cover back from being flush from the edges. When you pick the iPad up and hold it like you'd hold a book, the pressure from your hand makes the cover slide up so that it's flush. Logitech's marketing material shows that it's always flush no matter what, but in all the pictures I've seen in reviews, they have the same issue I'm seeing. None of them ever talk about it, which is why I'm thinking this is just me being overly critical/picky. (A magnetic connection on the corners would have alleviated this issue easily, but there don't seem to be any magnets holding the cover in place on top.) I just hate the fact that the keyboard portion of the case is constantly sliding around unsecured, even with the magnetic flap closed.

    The other side effect of this overly stiff hinge is that when you pick the iPad up, the flap on the back that comes away from the cover to enable all the different modes does not sit flush against the back. There's a gap that you can easily see and feel in your hand. It just makes the case look sloppy and incorrectly manufactured. I realize that this is the cheaper of the premium keyboard cases for the iPad Pro, but that still doesn't make it cheap. It's still over $100 for a bluetooth keyboard and flap of silicon.

    Notice I'm not complaining about the bulk. I don't mind it. My favorite iPad case of all time was, and will forever be, the Zagg Rugged Messenger that was available for the 10.5" iPad Pro. If Zagg had a similar one for the 11" iPad Pro, I'd buy it in a heartbeat. I don't mind a little bulk as long as it still includes versatility and functionality. But in this case, the problems I'm having are not coming from the extra bulk anyway.

    The Slim Folio Pro came close to replacing my Apple model. But when I took it off and put the Smart Keyboard Folio back on, I realized that the tradeoffs in design were not worth trying to replace it in the first place. It effortlessly goes on and off the iPad when I want it to, it fits the iPad perfectly, it uses the Smart Connector for power, it's splash proof, and I don't mind typing on the keyboard at all. The lack of side protection is annoying, but I put it in a TomToc sleeve when I leave the house with it, so that's not an issue most of the time.

    I'm super disappointed in the lack of good design from third parties in this area. In the third generation of iPad Pro accessories, many of them have refined their efforts but still not perfected their designs, and Zagg has actually gone way backward from several models they had for the 2nd gen iPad Pro that were fantastic. So this experiment was a failure. Turns out Apple's implementation, for me, is still the best one.
     
  2. GDF macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2010
    #2
    Nice review. Have you tried the Brydge one? I just got that one yesterday and comparing it to the Apple Keyboard. So far, biggest downfall is it is a lot heavier. It seems extremely well made and matches the iPad well.
     
  3. spiderman0616 thread starter macrumors 68040

    spiderman0616

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    #3
    I have not tried the Brydge ones, but have been tempted. I do like that they put a back cover in the box now, and it seems like a very solid solution. I just don't like the idea of having to pull the iPad out of those clips every time I want to use it as a tablet--also an issue with the Logitech by the way. "Read mode" is a bit of a joke because the whole setup is so thick and not easily held in even two hands for super long. Not an issue with the Apple one.

    I use my iPad in laptop configuration for most of the day while I'm working (unless I'm taking meeting notes or something), and then at night I'm using it more in tablet mode for reading, watching video, or extended sessions of VainGlory. So my iPad Pro usage is very much business during the day, party at night, if you will. As Jason Snell put it in his review, the Apple keyboard almost disappears when you fold it behind, and I like that a lot because it disappears but without leaving the back exposed to damage.
     
  4. GDF macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2010
    #4
    I use my iPad for mostly work during the day too. Funny - our son grabbed my iPad yesterday and thought it was a new Macbook Pro, as the space gray keyboard matches perfectly with the iPad. I am on iOS 13 and I keep thinking this keyboard has a trackpad.... LOL. Will see how it goes with it this week.

    I like the Apple Keyboad, but mine has worn out so much over 8 months and Apple won't replace it. So trying something different...
     
  5. spiderman0616 thread starter macrumors 68040

    spiderman0616

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    #5
    I have heard that Brydge almost perfectly matches the colors--that's pretty great.

    I have not had the wear issues on my Apple keyboard--mine looks pretty new still actually. There are some spots where you can tell I hit those keys more than others, but only if you catch them in certain light. What probably helps mine last longer too is that it shares duty with my Apple Magic Keyboard.
     
  6. JayMysterio macrumors 6502a

    JayMysterio

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2010
    Location:
    Rock Ridge, California
    #6
    The Brydge is near exact, a little less shine than the iPP itself.

    The issues some have, is more with the additional weight ( it makes the combined thing almost 3 lbs ) it adds. Also for some the typing experience isn't to their liking.
     
  7. spiderman0616 thread starter macrumors 68040

    spiderman0616

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    #7
    I've really never minded additional weight/bulk. The 10.5" Zagg Rugged Messenger was my ideal iPad Pro case. It had multiple viewing angles because of its innovative magnetic back flap (kind of like the Apple folio but the part that attached to the iPad's back could slide up and down and attach at multiple magnetic points), it protected the ENTIRE perimeter and back of the iPad, it had a great Pencil holder, the keyboard was fantastic, AND if you wanted to use the iPad as just a tablet, the inner portion that held the iPad could come completely out. It was held to the spine and back of the folio magnetically, and when you took it out, it still had all the side and back protected and you could just leave the keyboard/back cover folio piece behind if you really wanted to.

    Nobody, not even Apple or Zagg themselves, has come up with a better keyboard case implementation since then--in my mind it was as close to perfection as you could get, right down to how it felt when you held it in your hands. I actually almost didn't upgrade my 10.5" Pro just because I loved that case so much.
     
  8. JayMysterio macrumors 6502a

    JayMysterio

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2010
    Location:
    Rock Ridge, California
    #8
    For myself my favorite solution was the iPP cases for 1st gen. With the separate back cover that you could get in either black or white, with the detachable smart cover you could also get in black or white. I preferred that as it of course makes for simple tablet mode, and you needed to use an external BT keyboard that suits your typing experience.

    Since I've started using Notability because of the mix of drawing, handwriting, and typing, that combo is my favorite.
     
  9. The Game 161 macrumors P6

    The Game 161

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #9
    There’s certainly drawbacks but I love mine for the typing experience alone so for that it’s a keeper

    Looked at the brydge ones but reviews I’ve seen say you have to click down too hard for typing and it’s not as smooth as the Logitech
     
  10. ejin222 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2011
    #10
    I have the Brydge, and though at first you did have to click down harder, the typing experience has improved. I wouldn’t say that it’s the best typing keyboard that I have, but with everything else it gives me, I would recommend checking it out for the OP’s needs.
     
  11. spiderman0616 thread starter macrumors 68040

    spiderman0616

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    #11
    I really loved the typing on the Slim Folio Pro--it's probably the best keyboard out there for iPad. I also really loved the "Sketch Mode" where it would lay down at an angle--that would have been great for me for my work in Affinity Photo and Affinity Designer as well as note taking. I also LOVED that it was not a smudge magnet. It was similar to Apple's keyboard as far as the material, but there's something about it that doesn't pick up dirt nearly as easily, or actually at all. I actually tried to leave fingerprints on the Slim Folio Pro and couldn't make it happen. Apple needs to find out what this material is and use it for their next one.

    But I guess all the other tradeoffs in the design of this accessory were too much for my brain to justify the drawbacks. I just hate when edges don't line up or moving parts don't sit flush when folded. That bothers me to no end. I think what I need is the Slim Folio Pro but designed by Apple.
    --- Post Merged, Aug 12, 2019 at 11:51 AM ---
    I do a lot of design work, photo editing, and note taking, so I think the Brydge would be too impractical for me. Such a nice keyboard case though, especially now that it comes with that leather back cover.
    --- Post Merged, Aug 12, 2019 at 11:54 AM ---
    The one thing that always bothered me about that combination was that hump when the keyboard was all folded up. Made things too bulky. I think the redesign of the iPad itself was what was needed in order to get rid of that hump, and the Smart Keyboard Folio answered my prayers in that regard. I'm so happy to be rid of that middle ledge.

    What I miss though is that the combination of the old Smart Keyboard plus back Silicon Cover protected the back, front, AND the sides. To get the side protection now, I have to put my iPad with Keyboard Folio in a sleeve when I take it out of the house just in case it gets dropped or knocked into something. It feels kind of dumb to use a second case for an iPad that already has a case on it.
     
  12. JayMysterio macrumors 6502a

    JayMysterio

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2010
    Location:
    Rock Ridge, California
    #12
    There wouldn't be a hump.

    I was saying using the regular smart cover & and an external keyboard like the Apple Magic Keyboard or Logitech K380. I used the smart cover as protection & a stand, or if you using it in portrait, removed the cover entirely.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. spiderman0616 thread starter macrumors 68040

    spiderman0616

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    #13
    Ah, I see--yes, I see a lot of people doing that. In fact, when I got really tired of the keyboard hump on my 10.5" iPad Pro, I started using a Tech21 back cover and just the regular smart cover on the front, and then would connect to my Magic Keyboard when I really needed to type a lot. But it was shortly after that that I discovered the Zagg Rugged Messenger and then I was in love.
     

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12 August 12, 2019