When I first picked up my new Nexus 7 during Black Friday last year I fell in love pretty quickly. It was my first tablet and for a month or two it was always by my side. Then I started to get bored. I used it less and less, then not at all except for a week-long vacation in February. For a few months it sat quietly on my desk, but after just a few days with Octa’s flexible tablet stand I’ve started to see the Nexus 7 in a whole new light.
Octa’s TabletTail lineup is packed with different options, but the star of the show is the MonkeyTail, a bendable 3-foot stand that lets you position your tablet pretty much anywhere you want. The MonkeyTail holds your tablet by screwing into one of two other components. There’s the Spider, which clamps around the edges of your tablet, or the Vacuum Dock, which uses suction to secure your device. Both work well, though for a 7-inch tablet like mine the Spider’s grips didn’t feel completely secure, while the Vacuum Dock functioned perfectly.
There are a ton of other options to choose from, including a 5-inch flexible bridge, a clamp for gripping onto the side of a tablet and more. I could go through each one in detail, but it’s easier and more efficient to just show you instead.
Connecting and disconnecting the different pieces takes a bit of getting used to, but once I figured it out I didn’t run into any issues. Components screw together with a simple twist, and separate when you push in and twist in the opposite direction to release. Each piece also has a special locking mechanism so you know your tablet is secure while it’s in use. The entire thing feels very well designed with high-quality materials, and looks pretty good too.
Using Octa may be easy, but picking which bundle you want is a little confusing. Over on Kickstarter the company is offering a number of packages starting at $50, which gets you the flexible Bridge piece, a Spider for holding your tablet and a semi-permanent wall mount, which is perfect if there’s one spot in particular you want to keep your tablet mounted. For $70 you get the Spider along with the 3-foot bendable MonkeyTail, which I’d say is worth the extra $20. If you want the clamp component you’ll have to shell out at least $90 on Kickstarter.
For larger tablets the Spider works great, but I still prefer the Vacuum Dock. Unfortunately you’ll have to pledge at least $150 on Kickstarter for a bundle that includes this piece. But lucky for you, Octa is already offering some bundles through its own website, where you can grab the Vacuum Dock and the MonkeyTail for $69.99 combined or opt for the simple Whale and Vacuum package instead for just $39.99. Ordering your tablet stand straight from Octa also means you get a 30-day shipping guarantee, while the Kickstarter page (which already hit its $20,000 crowd-funding goal) won’t ship orders until September.
There are some risks pre-ordering any new product on Kickstarter, but considering Octa’s tablet stand is funded and available to order from the company’s own website we wouldn’t be too worried. Octa’s also already pulled off one successful Kickstarter campaign without any hiccups.
This product probably isn’t for everyone, but if you’ve grown bored of your tablet or just want to get a little more use out of it this is one Kickstarter project worth considering. Buying into Octa also means you’ll be able to expand your set in the future. If you want a clamp you’ll be able to order one down the road, and the company tells us it already has plans for future pieces to design and engineer. We can’t wait to see what comes next.