There are plenty of iPad cases on the market right now, as well as iPad stands by the droves. In that respect, the Newer Technology NuGuard GripStand (US$29.99, left in photo above) is nothing really new. But the handy iPad protective case / display stand / hand grip does have a unique quality -- with the purchase of the NuGuard GripBase ($19.99), the case can be transformed into a solid desktop workstation base or iPad kiosk.
Newer Technology sells the two products as a bundle for $39.99, perfect for those who are looking for a way to keep their iPads protected and close at hand both when mobile or seated at a desk. Read more for a look at how this protection system works, and be sure to browse the gallery below for photos of the GripStand and GripBase working together.
Let's start with the GripStand. Utilizing a grippy silicone material on the inside of a hard plastic shell, your iPad slips into the GripStand easily, but is held very securely in place. For those situations where you would like the screen of your iPad protected instead of the back, it's possible to simply flop the iPad over in the GripStand and expose the aluminum back of the device.
Once the iPad is mated with the GripStand, the circular handle / stand comes into play. It locks into a round hole on the back of the GripStand, and can be swiveled in 90° increments as well as flopped vertically through a full 180°. That's what makes this stand so unique, in that you can not only use that loop-like stand to prop up your iPad in a variety of poses, but actually use it as a hand-grip or handle when holding the device in your hand. I found that the Speak & Spell-like handle was actually quite useful for lugging the iPad around my kitchen while cooking.
The GripStand's "standle" (see, I just cleverly made up a word to describe the stand / handle) stays in place in any orientation very well. Compared to some other stands that either weren't as infinitely adjustable or just didn't hold the iPad in one orientation without flopping around, the GripStand is a breath of fresh air.
So, the GripStand is great for protecting your iPad, moving it around and setting it up on a desk. But what if you want a solid, almost immovable base for the iPad to stand on? That's where the GripBase comes in. Removing the "standle" from the back of the GripStand, the iPad and GripStand case can be snapped onto the pedestal of the GripBase. Note that the GripBase does require assembly, so if you have a fear of inserting one plastic part into another and installing one screw, you may wish to hire me at $120 / hour to assemble it for you.
Both the GripStand and GripBase come in iPad-flattering black or white colors.
For the quality of what you're getting for the GripStand / GripBase combo, I'd say that $40 is a reasonable price tag. You could easily pay as much as $70 for only a stand like the Thought Out Stabile iPad stand or $40 for the beautiful and functional Twelve South Compass stand. Neither of those products, although cool and useful in their own right, also give your iPad protection like the GripStand and GripBase do.
OK, here it is more than two months after the release of the iPad 2, and there's no iPad 2 version? The GripBase probably won't need to be redesigned, but the GripStand will. I'm hoping that the iPad 2 edition of the GripStand will be out shortly for all of you who want to protect your new baby in the latest that Newer Technology has to offer.
The Bottom Line
The GripStand case and GripBase stand (that's a tongue-twister!) make for a reasonably-priced, well-designed and well-made combo that can serve to protect, transport and display your iPad in a variety of configurations. Personally, I found the GripBase to be the best solution so far for keeping a kitchen-based iPad off the counter and away from spills. It's a solid base with a very low center of gravity, and holds the iPad firmly in place. There are better cases out there -- in fact, many of Newer Technology's own NuGuard cases will do a much better job of protecting an iPad -- but for certain use cases in offices, hospitals, stores and, yes, even kitchens, the GripStand and GripBase are tops for the price.