Tech News on G4

PadPivot NST turns lap into a tablet desk

Nov 6, 2012

By Greg Gazin - Apple Gazin’ - G4 Canada

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PadPivot NSTiPads and other tablets have become so versatile, they can now be used almost anywhere but sometimes holding them for long periods of time or keeping them in a place or at angle to effectively use them can be a challenge. This is especially true where the only available surface is an arm, a leg or a lap; like in the back seat of a car.

This is where the PadPivot NST comes in. It was created by Canadian inventor Bernie Graham from North Bay, Ontario with collaboration from Jim Young, a Seattle based industrial designer, who interestingly enough prototyped this product together over the internet.

PadPivot NST was created to allow you to conveniently position your iPad, tablet, e-reader or even iPhone hands-free even in the most awkward locations. Even better, its clever 2-piece design – a base and grip plate, makes it easy to fold up and fit in your pocket or purse.

For hands-free use the base can sit on your leg or lap. The grip plate has an adjustable pivot to allow you to adjust your device for the best possible view.

PadPivot NST SureGrip NST

The base has foldable hinges, making it easy to cradle nicely around your leg. It comes with an adjustable safety to tether it in place (only if you need to).  The grip plate, the part that attaches to your iPad or tablet, sits on a pivot to allow you to properly adjust your viewing angle.  To keep your device in place, i.e., to keep it from sliding, the grip plate is a sticky like surface, which is not glue, but rather a series of microscopic suction cups made from patented material using NST (Nano Suction Technology), that holds whatever is on it in place.

As with any type of suction cup that you may have encountered, you likely found out the hard way that the trick to a better grip is to ensure that the surface you're gripping to is as smooth and as glossy as possible. If not, it requires you to apply a glossy transparent decal (supplied) to the surface of your device. So in the case of the iPad, which has a  silver matte finish you'd need to apply a decal to the back, right over the Apple logo.

Now this might be a sticky point, pardon the pun with some people, especially those who keep their iPads and the like in fancy cases.

So, why not just use a traditional suction cup?

Interesting to note at this time, that the PadPivot NST is actually a redesign of the original PadPivot. While the concept was rock solid the grip was not bullet proof. The original PadPivot used a different type of sticky surface, which did not require a decal. Consequently, the grip required covering and cleaning constantly as dust and dirt build-up would cause the grip plate to lose its adhesiveness.

So perhaps you might find this minor inconvenience, if you must, worthwhile. Having a great grip with the pivot makes it awesome to use your tablet as a gaming device - like when playing Shrek Kart; mounting it on PadPivot almost makes it like a steering wheel. You’ll have more fun and a better play experience not having to hold your iPad in the air.

PadPivot NST Other Orientations

When not on your lap, the PadPivot NST can also be used in a traditional position on a desk or table or reoriented to prop up your device in landscape or portrait mode. It’s quick to pack for travel; you simply unscrew the grip plate and fold it up.

If you need to use your devices in convenient and not so convenient places, the PadPivot NST just might be what you need. Thinking back, there were certainly a number of times, especially while travelling, where it could have come in handy.

The new PadPivot NST sells for $39.99 USD. It comes with a safety strap and three glossy decals. It’s available directly from 

PadPivot NST Pros:
Versatile; ideal for awkward places
Strong Grip
Folds up small for travel


Requires decal to be applied to devices with a matte finish

Rating: 4.5/ 5


Greg Gazin can be reached at  gadgetguy "at" telus "dot" net , , or on Twitter @GadgetGreg

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