3.5 star rating

Belkin Tablet Stage Review

$169.00
Pros: Easy to use; Simple setup; Apps let you highlight items and draw on screen
Cons: IOS only; Arm slightly wobbly
The Verdict: Used in combination with your iPad and a projector, the Belkin Tablet Stage brings overhead projectors into the tablet era.

REVIEW

SPECIFICATIONS

The Belkin Tablet Stage looks to take overhead projectors into the 21st Century. When used with its app and a projector, this device lets you project images from your iPad to a roomful of students or executives, and you can annotate the images on screen. Does this $169 accessory represent the next generation of presentation devices?

Article Continued Below

Design

Belkin Tablet StageWith a white base, aluminum post and arm, and green accents, the Belkin Tablet Stage has a clean, almost antiseptic look that will fit in any classroom environment.

Attached to the post is an arm, at the end of which is a tablet cradle. The cradle slides up and down the arm, so you can easily move closer or further from your subject. In addition to sliding up and down, the cradle also rotates horizontally and vertically.

Considering the cradle can fit tablets ranging in size from 7 to 11 inches, it's a shame that Belkin has only released an iOS app.

MORE: Top 10 Designer iPad Cases

The Tablet Stage weighs 10.2 pounds; its base measures 15.4 x 13 inches, and with the post, the Stage is about 16.4 inches tall. The top of the base is covered in white plastic, but underneath is a large metal plate, which helps keep the Stage from moving around on your desk.

Setup

Belkin Tablet StageSome assembly is required. The Tablet Stage comes in three separate pieces: the base, the post and the tablet cradle. After inserting the post in the base, you must secure the two pieces together using the four included screws (you'll need to provide your own Philips head screwdriver). Then, secure the tablet cradle to the arm using one more screw.

The Stage also includes an optional LED light, which clips onto the Tablet Stage's arm. Three AAA batteries are also included for the light.

After downloading the free Belkin Stage app to our iPad, we placed the tablet in the cradle and snaked the Lightning cable down the post to a projector. In all, setup took about 10 minutes.

MORE: 21 Essential Apple iOS 6 Tips

In order for audiences to see what you're drawing on screen, you will also need a projector, as well as a Lightning- or 30-pin VGA or HDMI adapter, which costs $39 to $49.

App

Belkin Tablet StageThe Stage app is pretty minimalist. When you open it, the app activates the iPad's camera, which takes up the entire screen. In the upper right corner are two small icons to record a video of your presentation or take a snapshot.

On the left edge of the screen is a small carat that, when pressed, reveals a menu where you can select different brush sizes and colors, pick an eraser, choose a photo from your camera roll or decide between a black or white background.

On the right edge of the display is another small carat, which opens a menu with several tags: First, Second, Third, Take Note and Important are the defaults, but you can add your own. Press and hold on a tag, and you can drag it onto the main screen.

Performance

Belkin Tablet StageWhile bare bones, the Stage App was incredibly easy to use, crucial for anyone who's had to fumble around with tech prior to a presentation. In no time, we were drawing on the iPad to highlight and circle objects on screen. Considering the interactive nature of the iPad, though, we wish the app would let us annotate Web pages, too.

MORE: Best Tablets 2013

The Tablet Stage itself was easy to adjust, though the arm connecting the cradle to the post was a little wobbly at times, especially when we pressed hard on our iPad. The LED light accessory was plenty bright and helped keep shadows from falling on whatever we placed on the Tablet Stage.

Verdict

Belkin Tablet StageAs more and more classrooms are adopting the iPad as an educational tool -- every public school student in Los Angeles is scheduled to get one this year -- accessories such as the Belkin Tablet Stage will prove studentsngly useful for teachers and students alike. At $169, this accessory is a bit expensive, given that it contains no actual electronics, but the Belkin Tablet Stage is useful for those looking to spice up their presentations.

Tags: Belkin Tablet Stage, reviews

Technical Specifications
Belkin Tablet Stage
http://www.belkin.com/us


Accessories TypeProjectors Accessories
Battery Type/Life10.2 pounds,
Size15.4 x 13 inches
Weight
AUTHOR BIO
Michael A. Prospero, Reviews Editor
Michael A. Prospero, Reviews Editor
Michael A. Prospero has overseen reviews on Laptopmag.com since 2007, focusing on producing the most thorough and authoritative mobile product reviews. After receiving his Master of Science in Journalism from Columbia in 2003, Mike worked at Fast Company. Prior to that, he worked at The Times of Trenton, George and AlleyCat News.
Michael A. Prospero, Reviews Editor on
Twitter Google+
FIND A REVIEW
Laptops
All Product Types Accessories eReaders Laptops Networking Projectors Smartphones Software Storage Tablets
All Subcategories
All Subcategories All-Purpose Budget Business Desktop Replacement Gaming Multimedia Netbook Nettop Rugged Student Tablet PCs Ultraportable
Brand
Acer Alienware Apple Archos ASUS AVADirect Averatec BeagleBone BenQ CTL Corp. CyberPowerPC Dell Digital Storm eMachines Emtec Eurocom Everex Fujitsu GammaTech Gateway General Dynamics Getac Gigabyte Google Hercules HP HTC iBuyPower Intel Lenovo Maingear MSI Nokia Nvidia OCZ OLPC OQO Origin Panasonic Razer Sager Samsung Sony Sony PlayStation Sylvania Systemax TabletKiosk Toshiba Verizon Viewsonic Viliv Vizio VooDoo Workhorse PC ZT Systems
Minimum Rating
Any Rating Editor's Choice 4.5 Stars 4.0 Stars 3.5 Stars 3.0 Stars
Screen Size
10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 20 21 4 5 6 7 8 9
Resolution
1024x576 1024x600 1024x768 1136 x 768 1200X800 1280 x 720 1280x1024 1280x768 1280x800 1366x678 1366x768 1440x1050 1440x900 1600x768 1600x900 1680x1050 1680x945 1792 x 768 1900x1080 1920x1080 1920x1200 2560 x 1440 2560 x 1600 2560 x 1700 2880 x 1620 2880 x 1880 3200 x 1800 800x400 800x480
Weight Range
10.1 - 12.0 pounds 12.1 - 14.0 pounds 14.1 - 16.0 pounds 2 lbs 2 pounds and under 2+ lbs 2.1 - 4.0 pounds 4.1 - 6.0 pounds 6.1 - 8.0 pounds 8.1 - 10.0 pounds Over 16 pounds Under 2 pounds
more options
SUBSCRIBE