The unfortunately named Pong Research offers a range ofmobile cases that promise great things - significant protection from radiation, much improved reception and faster data download speeds. The 'Pong New iPad Case (Wi-Fi + 4G),' at £94.99 is currently top of the range, with built-in coupled antenna for improved signal strength and related health benefits. Visit Group test: What's the best tablet PC?
Impressively, Pong claims the case reduces exposure to potentially harmful radiation by up to 72 per cent, and is "tested and proven in independent (US) FCC certified laboratories." The only problem with this is professional opinion differs on the negative impact on health of mobile devices, with a recent UK based review showing "no convincing evidence" of a link. See also Logitech Ultrathin Keyboard Cover for iPad.
Potential health benefits aside, the makers insist the case optimises your signal strength, by redirecting radiation away from your head, and as a result more radiation is available to communicate with the "cell tower". Intrigued, we tried Pong's iPad case in various London locations, comparing it with a selection of other cases and Apple's tablet naked. Despite some impressive reception claims, we found no significant difference in signal strength, at least significant to the eye, or speed loading internet pages.
Looking at Pong's iPad case, we can only think all investment was spent on the embedded technology and not the design. The case could best be described as functional, made to be durable and dependable rather than attract the eye. Looks are important and we feel Pong will miss out on potential customers unimpressed by a design that simply doesn't appeal.
The case is at least flexible, with a cool origami styling that can be folded into a variety of viewing configurations. Additionally, Pong notes the case has been designed for the new iPad, rather than the similar iPad 2, and as a result fits perfectly.