We know it's been some time since the PITAKA team announced the MagEZ Case for iPad Pro. Since then, we've been working hard to get the case ready, and now we'd like to share what's been going on behind the production scenes of the 100% Magic Keyboard Compatible iPad Pro Case.
Why this time?
Earlier this March, Apple launched the newest iPad Pro and the all-new Magic Keyboard, which impressed many people, including the PITAKA team. We love how the tablet and Keyboard look and how they work together. As a pioneer of developing magnetic systems, we were excited to see Apple using magnets to produce innovative technology.
Inspired by many PITAKA fans and Apple's innovation, we decided to make our first iPad Pro Case made from aramid fiber.
After researching the market, we discovered that there was still no case fully compatible with the Magic Keyboard. Although many iPad Pro cases are available, they need to be removed to attach the tablet to the Magic Keyboard magnetically. However, without a case, the iPad Pro is exposed to scratches, and more so without the Keyboard attached.
How Did We Make the Magic Keyboard compatible iPad Pro case?
We knew the iPad Pro case had to be extremely thin to fit seamlessly with the Keyboard, but when we first began designing, we had no idea just how thin until we completed our prototype back in May. Although the prototype only measured a mere 1.75mm, it was still not slim enough for the Magic Keyboard to close properly with the tablet.
The thinner the case, the harder the manufacturing process.
While we're used to creating super-slim cases at PITAKA, we had never designed a product with a surface area as large as the iPad Pro.
To produce the case, we had to deal with the industry's long-standing challenge: to make sections of ultra-thin PC (polycarbonate) using injection molding over a large surface area.
Why don't we use aramid fiber to make the whole product? We can't embed magnets or the pins if the whole piece is made of aramid fiber due to the characteristics of the material. Then it won't work with the Magic Keyboard.
First, we needed to find the proper injection molding machine. At home and abroad, we searched for an injection molding machine capable of producing the super-slim case. Once we found the machine, we completed numerous tests to adjust the mold to achieve our specifications.
Since thin cases are more susceptible to cracking, choosing a flexible material was essential. Besides, we needed a plastic with good fluidity to fill the mold.
But the thickness of the case is not the only thing on our mind. We also needed to take into consideration how deep the frame of the case should be. If it were too deep, then the Magic Keyboard would not fit seamlessly to the iPad Pro. If it were too narrow, then the case wouldn't offer enough protection for the iPad Pro.
We kept adjusting the mold and ran numerous tests to find the perfect balance.
What's a 100% Magic Keyboard Compatible iPad Pro case?
There are a few types of Magic Keyboard compatible iPad Pro cases on the market. We tested several other cases and found that they didn't quite tick all the boxes.
Some couldn't charge the iPad through the Keyboard's built-in USB-C port. On others, when we tried to close the Magic Keyboard, it wouldn't close fully, leaving a noticeable gap.
"We don't call that a Magic Keyboard compatible case," said our PITAKA project engineer.
A Seamless Experience Using the MagEZ Case for iPad Pro
The case we designed and manufactured was thinner than those we had tested and was (eventually!) slim enough to close the Magic Keyboard and iPad Pro.
PITAKA case sample vs. other brand’s case
We Don't Compromise on Quality
The three small magnetic contacts on the back of the case allow the charging of your iPad Pro through the Keyboard's USB-C port.
PITAKA iPad Pro Case sample
To ensure the iPad Pro could charge and send data using these contacts, we looked at several options, including spring contacts. Spring contacts have slow charging speeds and short life. They're also the easiest and cheapest choice for manufacturing. Although more challenging to implement into our design, we selected copper contacts, due to their long lifespan and ability to handle high-level currents.
With the PITAKA iPad Pro case, you can use both the tablet and Keyboard as they were designed to be used. When you're not using the Magic Keyboard, the iPad Pro is still protected. Attach it magnetically to the Keyboard when you are ready to type. Snap it shut when you finish.
Where Are We Now?
All good things take time, and although we've been working on the iPad Pro Case for a while, its launch date is just around the corner.
Since quality is always our top priority, we're in the final phase of our testing: accelerated life and reliability testing.