Gadget of the week: Brydge iPad case the gap

Three Silicon Valley entrepreneurs have come up with a case that can convert any of the iPads into a MacBook — lighter than the Air and, if you prefer, with additional speakers

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What is it?

Thanks to the deluge of iPad cases on the market today, many of them not very user-friendly, consumers tend to end up perplexed when shopping for one. And the looks? Let's not even get there.

Three Silicon Valley entrepreneurs think they have an answer. And it's not just an iPad case, it converts your Apple tablet into a MacBook Air-like almost fully fledged computer. Say hello to Brydge.


What's special about it?

Let me start by saying that the Brydge has not been mass-produced yet. But the three men behind the concept put their project up on crowd-funded website, a portal to help raise funds for aspiring start-ups with a target of $90,000 (Dh330,593). The Brydge crossed that mark one day after it went live, adding up to more than $362,000 at the time of going to print.

The interest in the project is understandable, considering the Brydge's unique design, which, the creators will happily admit, borrows heavily from Apple. Well, it's designed for the iPad, after all.

Built with the same tinge of aluminium that is now standard in most MacBooks and iPads, the Brydge case comes with a hinge that lets you clamp your iPad (very securely) and turn it into a laptop, allowing for almost 180 degrees positioning.

Connected to the tablet via Bluetooth, it also comes with optional speakers that complement the existing ones on your iPad. The Brydge hibernates and switches on with your iPad and goes to sleep when it is clamped down. Charging can be done via a USB.

Weighing a little more than 1kg when connected to the iPad, it is slightly lighter than the MacBook Air. The Qwerty keyboard, too, is incredibly thin and comes with dedicated hotkeys specifically designed for iPad functions.


When is it available and for how much?

Because the Brydge is still in "Pledge" state, you can pledge $170 for the model without speakers and $210 for the one with speakers, with an additional $35 for international shipping. You also have the option to pledge more to support the project. If all goes according to plan after the June 4 deadline (and it already looks like it is), the guys behind it say they plan to make it available by October. For details, visit