The Zagg Slim Book Go and Rugged Book Go are popular keyboard cases for the latest generation iPad Pro that offer good protection combined with the productivity of a keyboard for your new iPad Pro.
Zagg’s Slim Book Go and Rugged Book Go are not all that different. Many features of the Slim Book Go are included in the Rugged Book Go. Each of these cases will fit the 11-inch iPad Pro and the 12.9-inch iPad Pro although we are reviewing the latter for this review.
These two devices encompass the new iPad Pros 2020 from all sides. When turned off, the iPad Pro is fully covered – except for the bump in the camera. The keyboard covers the face of the iPad and the cover protects the rest.
On the back of each case is a very strong kickstand. Instead of moving away from the middle of the iPad like a traditional crutch, it connects down below. The hinge is just against the edge and the stand is flat against the table top or desk. It has a very strong feel and this holder has a rubberized edge to prevent it from slipping.
By creating the stand this way instead of protruding from the middle of the iPad, it has a much more elegant look. It also works fairly well on your lap, but since the keyboards are free, it’s still best to tap your knees with the iPad in front of you on another surface.
Speaking of keyboards, Zagg did not skimp. These keyboards are delicious to type. There is a solid key movement, a small side key movement and a tactile mat finish on them. All keys are backlit and this backlight can be adjusted. As with any keyboard, it will take time to adjust to what you type now.
Slim Book Go and Rugged Book Go have solid keyboards
The keys have slightly rounded caps that we have seen from Zagg in the past. If you tend to land on the corners of the keys, which is easy to do from an Apple keyboard, because the keys are so solid, you can slide corners. But there will always be adjustments to be made to any new keyboard.
They also have a full row of function keys at the top. This is a feature that is sorely lacking on Apple keyboards centered on the iPad and that is well implemented here. It’s quick and easy to control media, adjust volume, access the app selector, etc. Finally, these keyboards can also connect to two devices at the same time and alternate on a whim.
Slim Book Go (top) and Rugged Book Go (bottom)
If it was not obvious due to their detachable nature, these keyboards connect via Bluetooth. This is how they pair with multiple devices and give them that range. The downside is that they are now another device that needs to be charged. When a keyboard uses the smart connector, it frees itself from the iPad and doesn’t require charging alone. Of course, then it cannot be used when it is detached.
To check the battery life, press the fn key and the battery life. The power light blinks green, yellow, or red three times. With three green flashes representing more than 50% of remaining battery, the yellow representing 25 to 50% and the red signal less than 25%. To power up, there is a USB-C port on the right side.
Zagg Slim Book Go
Slim Book Go
Slim Book Go is the more elegant option of the two. The detachable keyboard is wrapped in a slender fabric rather than just plastic. It’s a little lower and weighs slightly less than the Rugged Book Go, but the design and materials allow it to fit in your bag with less friction.
Fabric cover on the Slim Book Go keyboard case for iPad Pro
It has an Apple Pencil holder integrated inside the cover, storing it in a magnetic chamber so that it is never dislodged while on the go. It sits right next to the iPad Pro closest to the hinge. There is also a slight ridge on the side of the keyboard, allowing you to place the Apple Pencil over there to keep it from rolling away when not in use.
Slim Book Go using its support
The keyboard is completely flat against your table or desk, which can sometimes be a bit uncomfortable, but we like being able to detach it and use our iPad more like a screen a few inches instead of compressing everything for space.
It provides enough protection here, and it’s the one we prefer, but if you really want to put sustainability to the test, check out the Rugged Book Go.
Zagg Rugged Book Go
What the Rugged Book Go does differently is its more robust design. It’s not much bulkier, although it does add a bit to the thickness and width. It also swaps the elegant fabric around the keyboard and plastic shell for a TPU-coated case.
With this rubbery coating added around the keyboard and iPad, it is able to withstand drops of more than six and a half feet into the air. If drops are your biggest concern, the Rugged Book Go is the best option here.
Zagg Rugged Book for 2020 iPad Pro
The Rugged Book Go keyboard also connects differently. It has a larger hinge and when opened, it lifts the back of the keyboard up slightly less than an inch, creating an angled typing experience.
The Apple Pencil is also protected here with a TPU pouch on the side of the case, which allows it to charge while being protected.
Should I buy the Rugged Book Go or Slim Book Go?
Adjustable and slim kickstand
Protective and durable
Keyboard can be completely removed
Function key line
Use the USB-CNo trackpad
Need charged rather than smart connector
Rounded keys take a slight adjustment
No brightness keys on the keyboard
Rating: 4 out of 5
The Slim Book Go is available from Zagg for the iPad 11 inch and 12.9 inch 2020 iPad starting at $ 99, which will also suit the previous generation, the 2018 models. The Rugged Book Go is also available for the 11 models inches and 12.9 inches for $ 149.