E&B Company's Slipper and Flipper PDA Cases
A PDA in the year 2003 is a remarkable piece of technology: once you have one, it's hard to believe you ever got along without it. And increasingly, schools in our area are agreeing. Although laptops may still prevail in terms of power and versatility-and even this gap is closing-PDAs now provide not only functionality, but even more importantly, simple exposure to technological paradigms to which many students might be otherwise deprived. In those districts where students most need access to the tech, because parents are least likely to make it available in the home, deploying a desirable item like a laptop to a child is also the most likely to be a security risk-to both the child and the laptop.
In these days of techno-convergence, a quality PDA can provide enterprise capabilities, Internet access, Bluetooth compatibility, and most of the other features sought after by education buyers, while still offering an inconspicuous profile. The problem is, unlike the case with most full-size portable computers, PDAs are much less self-contained and far more physically vulnerable. For notable example, just ask anyone you know with a Palm or Pocket PC (including this reviewer), if they still have their original stylus. And, according to industry statistics, about two-thirds of all accidents with a PDA result in the purchase of new unit: just about no one can make a living specializing in PDA repairs alone. For this reason, a good quality case is almost as important as a quality handheld computer.
E&B Company's cases are about as good as I've used myself-in fact, my Palm is sitting in a Slipper T3 now. Several versions are available, specifically designed for a variety of popular models: Palms, iPaqs, Handspring Visors, etc. The leather wallet cases feature flip-tops with magnetic closures, and access points for cradles and power switches, enabling the user to charge and sync the units while cased. Belt clips are also available for transport ease. A small weakness is the lack of substantial space to hold multiple peripherals and accessories, but I've really had no problem keeping the few I use in place
For students, E & B offer a good basic model, the Flipper. These neoprene-based, sport/utility cases are side opening and highly durable. Equipped with a belt clip as a standard feature, they provide much more space for accessories, and a substantially lower price point, even prior to any potential volume discounts for education procurement. These products have a bit more padding, and, while perhaps not be designed for ruggedized environments, they should be at least a bit more protective than most comparably priced solutions.
The best endorsement I can give to these well-designed products is that I wouldn't want to do without mine. For those interested in understanding why, much more information, as well as online ordering, can be found at the company's site, www.ebcases.com.#