Big Grips offers an unusual product. While other companies specialize in sleek, thin, beautiful cases and holders for the iPad, Big Grips has come up with a 1.5-in thick, squishy, colorful, holder. The company emphasis is on things like; “non-toxic”, “lead free”, “resistant to stains”, and “easy to clean”. In other words, this thing is designed for kids.
The primary product is the Big Grips Frame which holds the original iPad. For those who are interested, a version for the iPad 2 is in production. The iPad fits securely in the frame — in fact, it’s not all that easy to insert the iPad into the frame. The idea being, once the iPad is actually set in the frame, it will not fall out.
Big Grip Frame - front view in gray
Big Grip Frame and Stand in green
The frame is available on Amazon as a single item for US$34.95, in blue, green, pink, or gray. Buyers can also purchase a matching stand ($24.95) and when purchased at the same time, there is a savings of US$9.95. Both products together are US$49.95.
Big Grip Frame and Stand in blue
Using the product
I tested this product with a little four year old girl who had been trained to treat the family iPad as if it were extremely breakable. She would carry it across the room clutched to her chest in both arms and only use it on the couch. She was wary about changing that behavior even with the options of the Big Grips Frame.
It truly does take a bit of time to get the iPad inserted securely into the frame, but that is the whole purpose of the product. It could be a bother if adults choose to constantly put it in and remove it, however, I think it would become fairly easy to do after a few tries. The adults expressed some concern that the back of the iPad was still exposed, but as a reviewer I don’t share that concern. As evidenced in the following back view of the frame, it would be almost impossible for the iPad back to actually hit the floor were it to be dropped on it’s back.
Big Grip Frame back view in pink
Our test kid was able to easily hold the iPad while in the frame and, after awhile, seemed to relax while using it. The fact that she did not touch the screen accidentally was a big advantage while she was turning pages in her books. Makes me wish I could solve that problem for myself.
She tended to knock the iPad over backward when it was sitting in the stand in the vertical position, but had more success when it was set horizontally.
Do I recommend it?
I do. I think adults could relax a great deal if their young children had this frame in place while using the family iPad. From personal experience I know that when my four year old great grandson used my original iPad, I hovered — I mean really hovered — because he would frequently drop one toy to go play with another. I would not have felt that compulsion if we had been able to use a Big Grips Frame. Yes, we need to teach the kids to respect the electronics, but they are kids and in order to learn they have to experience. This product allows that to happen while protecting your investment.