Belkin Ultimate Keyboard Case for iPad brings style and functionality to the iPad accessory.

According to a recent study by Pew Internet Research, one-third of the adult (age 18 and over) population in the United States owns a tablet. Of that figure, 46% of are Apple tablets (iPad or iPad Mini). I happen to fall into that category.

I have been an iPad owner since 2011 when I received my iPad 2 as a birthday gift. At the time, I have used it in a variety of functions – the most recent being an e-reader, which I never thought would happen (I enjoy the feel of a ‘real’ book) – and have spent time researching the most beneficial accessories to accompany my iPad.

With the astronomical growth in the tablet market – 31% increase in 3 years – it is estimate that tablets will overtake the computer market outselling notebooks 6-to-1 by the year 2017. Many people are already making the transition from notebook owner to strictly using a tablet. With that transition, many people decide to add a Bluetooth keyboard to their arsenal of accessories.

Since owning my iPad, I have paired it with four different Bluetooth keyboards – the Targus AKB32US, the Logitech Keyboard Case for iPad, the Clam Case and now, the Belkin Ultimate Keyboard Case for iPad – attempting to find the ideal keyboard case that would give me a comfortable keyboard for typing, a lightweight case that would protect, but not weigh down and stylish to enhance the existing style of the iPad. When I heard about the release of the Belkin Ultimate Keyboard Case, I thought that maybe I had found what I had been looking for.

The Belkin Ultimate Keyboard Case (UKC) weighs in at 17 ounces, more than 10 ounces less than the ClamCase, which was the case I had on my iPad prior to the UKC. There is a lightweight, but solid plastic frame that snaps around the iPad to secure it into place. The UKC wraps and folds around the iPad similar to the Apple Smart Cover.

The UKC folds flat with the keyboard measuring at only 6.4mm thick. The back of the keyboard is an aluminum cover that matches the stylish nature of the iPad. The plastic frame that incases the iPad has a flexible leather-like stand that protects the back of the iPad when the case is closed. The UKC also features three viewing angles with precision-hold magnets to lock it into place.

From the moment I opened the box, the Ultimate Keyboard Case did not disappoint. It was very simple to slide the iPad into place and begin using it. The Bluetooth connected quickly to my iPad and any time I opened the case, I did not experience lag time with the keyboard connecting.

One of the features that I did not mention under the specifications was the SoundFlow design around the speaker. The case does not have an opening over the speaker, but instead has an opening that directs sound towards you. Most cases only have an opening that allows sound to escape from you. When I first started using the case, I was more interested in the feel of the keyboard, but found that the SoundFlow design did enhance the volume of the iPad.

The keyboard is extremely responsive and feels very close to a regular Mac keyboard. The soft feel of the keys as they are pressed into the board is comforting and familiar, not clunky like some keyboard cases.

The only thing I do not like about the case is that you cannot use the keyboard easily unless the case is opened on a solid surface, like a table. The majority of the time I write I am usually positioned on our couch or even in bed. These surfaces do not work well with the UKC’s flexible design. It works great on a table or desk, but any time I tried to use the keyboard on a soft surface, either the case would fold in on itself or the case would simply be unstable in the open position.

The Ultimate Keyboard Case for iPad is a welcome addition to any iPad owner’s collection. It retails for $99.99 from Belkin or any retailers that carry Belkin products.