In this article I’ll summarize what I’ve found to be the key accessories that have made me more productive with my iPad, either in the office, on the couch or on the road.
My list is not all inclusive as there are many, many accessories that can make your tablet experience more productive and I would look forward to hearing about your own ideas in the comments.
#1 – Keyboard / Case
You will want a case for protection and if you do a lot of typing then you may want to consider a folio case which is a case and keyboard built into one.
Recommended Folio Case: Anker Bluetooth iPad Folio Case
The Anker Bluetooth Folio case has a synthetic leather exterior that resembles the look and feel of a notebook. When you open or close the case it triggers the auto wake function and connects the keyboard via bluetooth automatically. It also has power saving mode that is triggered after 10 minutes of inactivity.
This folio keyboard has positive reviews on amazon with a 4.5/5 rating.
Available in 25 different colors and patterns the Fintie smartshell case provides exceptional value and high quality. With precise cutouts and auto sleep/wake functionality you are in control of your iPad. The case is slim and lightweight and also serves as a stand to watch movies and tv shows.
I would argue that the next iPad accessory that is overlooked is a tool to project the iPad screen to a TV or projector. There is nothing more cool than giving a presentation from an iPad. Laptops have always been a pain to connect to projectors and after doing it for over 15 years I can honestly say that it is still a pain.
Projecting from an iPad is just more elegant, simple and impressive for those in the room. Maybe I am biased, but I have found that projecting from my old iPad via a simple VGA adapter always just worked.
There are also some wonderful presentation apps out there that make the process of actually presenting more fun with features like finger-based laser pointing to tele-prompting to remote slide control using an iPhone.
Apps like Prezi, Haiku and Keynote all have some or all of these capabilities and work using a simple adapter between your iPad and the projector.
An even cooler and more elegant option is to carry around an AppleTV with your iPad. I do not do this myself, but I have read many posts from those that do. Just connect the AppleTV to the projector or a TV and then you connect your iPad to the AppleTV over the wireless network.
This means that you are now projecting wirelessly and are free to walk around the room unencumbered. If you are curious how easy this is go over to an Apple Store and try to connect your iPhone to one of the display AppleTV’s.
For something a little more low-tech, the stylus is a classic accessory that every iPad owner should keep close at hand. Why you ask?
Sure you can draw with it, but what I’ve found most valuable is the simple process of being able to sign documents electronically.
Once you have mastered apps like PDFProvider and GoodReader you can electronically process any document requiring your signature without having to print and scan anything.
The other reason to get a stylus is that they are so cheap and easy to find these days. Lots of companies are buying integrated stylus-pens as marketing give-aways so its pretty easy to find a simple stylus for free.
These cheaper options are certainly fine for those who only utilize a stylus infrequently. For those of you more comfortable writing on your iPad, one of the more expensive options may be more appealing.