WriteCase: Wired keyboard folio
Easy to use plug and play design.
Typing made simple on your iPad 2 or Retina iPad
Hi. My name is Frank Rizzo and I am the Lead Developer of the WriteCase, a wired keyboard folio for iPad.
There are many keyboard cases for iPads on the market. I know this first hand since I have purchased many sizes, styles and kinds over the past few years in search of just the right one. Two issues keep coming back to haunt me with regards to the stack of old cases I have sitting on my shelf.
- They need to be charged. How often I would have a big meeting that I wanted to take notes with my latest Bluetooth keyboard case and my iPad only to have the case run out of juice halfway through. Think of all of the things you have that require charging - cell phones, laptops, a cordless phone at home, handheld games and of course, iPads. Another frustration is that the little cord required to charge the Bluetooth keyboard case is usually something that I've misplaced after the first week.
- They use Bluetooth. Bluetooth is less secure when compared to a wired keyboard. Bluetooth technology solves the issue of connectivity, however, at the cost of security. Hackers can intercept what you type between a Bluetooth keyboard and your iPad.
The quote "Necessity is the Mother of Invention" spurred the idea for the WriteCase. The WriteCase provides ease of use (no charging) and peace of mind (no Bluetooth) with a keyboard on the iPad 2 or Retina iPad. It is ready to type when you are!
The WriteCase utilizes the Apple 30-pin connector eliminating the need for it to be charged or paired via Bluetooth. Once the connector is plugged in, the iPad will power the keyboard which means it is truly plug and play…or better yet, plug and TYPE!
HOW WE GOT STARTED
WriteCase is a son-in-law (Frank G. Rizzo) and father-in-law (Wayne Keller) partnership. We each bring a unique set of skills and expertise that compliment one another in the development of this product. When I (Frank) first met Wayne he told me "If you ever come up with an idea for an invention I can get it built!" I was very happy to make that initial phone call to Wayne back in late February of this year with my idea for the WriteCase and take him up on that offer he made me years ago.
Our first concept/prototype was made of cardboard and basically was a keyboard with an attached iPad stand.
First WriteCase Concept/Prototype (March 2013)
The WriteCase keyboard stand was not a practical solution especially for Education. It would be difficult for schools to store the device in addition to all of the iPads. The keyboard stand provided no protection for the iPad as well. We were concerned it would be too easy to knock off an iPad from the stand onto the floor. We decided to modify the original concept to enclose the iPad into a folio case.
Our first step in starting to develop a true working WriteCase prototype was to contract with an engineering company that Wayne had worked with on many previous products. The engineering company has access to many factories that produce high quality electronic goods. We continue to work with our engineer to define the specifications of the WriteCase during the process of refining and designing it. In turn, the engineering company communicates those specifications to the factory to manufacture the two working prototypes shown below.
Second Prototype (May 2013)
The Second Prototype was our first real working model but it had two areas we wanted to improve. The keyboard itself needed to be larger. The keys were too small and very close together. We also wanted to improve how the iPad fit into the folio case by utilizing a back that the iPad would snap into snugly.
The Third Prototype solved both of these issues. We continue to improve on the model by shortening the 30-pin cable and enclosing the center storage area in fabric (see below).
Third Prototype (June 2013)