iPad: To Have and To Hang

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Apple’s iPad is almost always thought of as a traveling companion. But sometimes you just want the tablet to stay in place: safe in a corner of the kitchen, upright on a desk or at rest against the wall of the larger pad you inhabit. Now, Sanus Systems, a company known for its flat panel TV mounts, has unveiled what it should have named the iHang but instead calls the VisionMount VMA301 iPad mount adapter.

The 7.7 x 10.3 x 0.8-inch (W x H x D) adapter attaches to any VESA 100 x 100 compatible Sanus TV mount, the type normally used for hanging a small LCD TV on any table stand or wall mount. Though screws are used for attaching the one-pound adapter to the mount, the iPad itself fits snugly into the adapter without screws or an adhesive. When you want to pick up the iPad and carry it away, you simply press the adapter’s release tab. What this flexibility means is that you could have VMA301s strategically mounted in multiple locations: the bathroom, kitchen, home office and the office away from home. When you get to where you’re going, you simply pop the iPad into the local perch and hope the Wi-Fi is working.

You can continue to touch-control the iPad even as it hangs, but in practice you’re more likely to touch the screen simply to launch a media player so you can enjoy audio, video or photos. You can still perform touch-intensive applications like email, but a Bluetooth keyboard might be more efficient at such times.

When situated in the VisionMount adapter, your iPad has as many degrees of freedom as the mount to which it is attached. So, when combined with a full-motion mount, the adapter allows you to adjust the screen to an ideal viewing angle. An included Virtual Axis 3D cup-shaped faceplate enables 360 degrees of motion for both landscape and portrait viewing. According to Sanus, the Virtual Axis 3D faceplate is compatible with the following Sanus wall models: MF202, MF209 and MF215. The former two are available in black, the latter in black or silver. The adapter is also compatible with the MD115 full-motion desk mount.