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1 Elago P2 – £29.99/$49.99 amazon.com
The P2’s two-pronged grip means you can easily charge your device in any orientation, and it even has an iMac-style hole in the back of the aluminium to help keep your cables tidy. The angle of the stand is much shallower than, for example, the Mika, so you can comfortably tap away with your iPad facing you at a good angle. There’s no protection for the back of your iPad when it’s on the stand, but thankfully the whole thing is big enough to accommodate a case as well. It’s a nice design, but the fixed angle might frustrate some people.
2 Ten One Magnus mini – £24.95/$29.95 tenonedesign.com
This iPad mini-only stand looks incredibly simple, but hides a clever trick. The magnetic stand clips securely onto your mini in landscape mode, and almost disappears when attached. The clip itself is really strong and the iPad attaches securely, but when you tap the screen the whole thing rocks. It may be the plastic design or the small footprint of the base but it doesn’t feel stable. It’s also locked into landscape mode (although you can flip the whole thing over to type comfortably if you wish). With a larger base this could be a real contender.
3 Bluelounge Mika – £39.95/$49.99 bluelounge.com
The Mika is reminiscent of an iMac’s foot, and while this looks great, the stand lacks a lot of flexibility due to its design. Plastic edges protect your iPad from metal scrapes, and your tablet will always be secure on your desk, but there are a few issues. First, the angle is quite upright, and it’s not adjustable; if you don’t like the angle, there’s nothing you can do. Plus, because the stand sits right on your desk, charging is off limits when using the iPad in portrait mode, unless you’re willing to use it upside down. It looks great, but functionality really suffers.
Like the Slope, the MiStand uses micro-suction technology to grip your iPad. But this has a trick up its sleeve – a magnetic ball joint that means you can rotate and manoeuvre your device to a number of angles. The weighty aluminium design feels lovely, and the suction pad on the base will keep it secure on your desk. The only issue we had was removing our device – the suction pads were a little strong, but this would likely ease up over use. It’s an expensive choice, but the mix of function and design make it a top choice.
The simple curve of the BookArc is really lovely. It’s a simple design that’s carried out brilliantly. The stand actually just has a slit down the centre, with rubber inserts giving you the option to change the way your iPad slots in. A small grip is perfect for an iPad mini, and can also be used for the iPad Air, but you can switch it out at any time and get a larger grip that works brilliantly with older devices. A cut-out lets you access the home button even in portrait, and the charging cable has plenty of room beneath the stand.
6 Slope – £TBA/$49.99 dekke.net
The Slope uses a nano foam pad that literally sticks your iPad to a flat surface, and it works really well. A sticky black pad faces you, and simply placing your iPad onto it will stick it there, held solidly on the stand. There’s a second sticky pad on the base of the stand, so you can make the whole thing incredibly secure. The fixed angle might not appeal to everyone, but the simple ‘stick on, pull off’ nature is sure to please. It requires a little maintenance (cleaning the pad keeps it sticky), but this is an appealing option if you’re after something different.