New ingredients for an old iPad

New ingredients for an old iPad

July 19, 2011

Being an app developer, it’s a given that whenever a new iOS device is announced, I’ll be getting one. I can live with that, but the downside is that our first generation iPad (which I keep for testing older hardware and operating systems) ends up lying around and gathering dust.

Ever since I got an iPad 2 I’ve been trying to think of ways to give the older one more of a dedicated use. But what? Nothing really came to mind aside from using it to play videos for the kids on long car trips, which doesn’t happen all that often. Then the other day I saw this awesome under-cabinet mount by Griffin. Perfect!

Except for two small problems: Firstly, it’s only available for the original iPad (not a problem now, but when screws are involved I like some flexibility). And secondly, even if Griffin decides to make attachments for future iPads, the mount itself is only available in the US.

Then Xavier Verhoeven (iPad accessory maker and former online editor at Australian Macworld) reminded me of an Aussie startup with a product called The Wallee. The Wallee is an iPad case with an X-shaped hole in the back, with accessories that let you hang it, hold it, swing it or do whatever you like with it. And it turns out they have a Vesa mount for it, which suddenly means it will work with hundreds of brackets from any number of other manufacturers.

So after finding a Vesa mount and confirming with the Wallee guys that it would work, I bit the bullet and ordered all the necessary bits and pieces.

Here’s what I got:

  1. Brateck under-cabinet Vesa mount ($18.13)
  2. Wallee iPad case ($39.95)
  3. Wallee wall mount disk ($10.00)
  4. Wallee Vesa adaptor ($14.95)

Under-cabinet mount components

This is what the Wallee case looks like from the back. I got a clear one, but there are other colours available.

The Wallee Case

This shows the under-cabinet mount with the Wallee Vesa adaptor and wall mount attached to it. The hinge tilts 110 degrees and swivels 360.

Vesa mount, Wallee Vesa adaptor and Wallee wall mount

Here’s what it looks like when folded away under the cabinet.

The unit neatly folds away

All set up. The app shown is TuneIn Radio Pro. (highly recommended – the UI is excellent and it has all the major Australian stations).

Playing the radio using TuneIn Radio Pro

The Wallee can be rotated 90 degrees, so both orientations are supported. The app shown here is the excellent The Photo Cookbook.

Viewing a recipe from The Photo Cookbook app

Viewing a recipe from The Photo Cookbook app

Being English, my wife likes to keep up with the latest on the BBC iPad app.

Showing the BBC iPad app

All in all, I’m very happy with the result. Sure it’s not as sleek and tidy as the Griffin one, but I can live with this and my wife is stoked to have radio, email, Skype, the web and recipes all within reach and without consuming valuable bench space.

Have you got an iPad rig or dedicated use for an old iPad? Please share it in the comments!

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1 Comment

  1. This is seriously nice. If I had a second iPad (or a kitchen with seating space!) I’d do something like this.


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