Is that it? Taking a look at BAs seat back iPad holder

When British Airways unveiled their new short-haul cabin product, one of the benefits they touted in the press release was an iPad holder incorporated into the new seat back.

BA iPad mini holderIndeed they actually said:

Customers can also make use of an eye-level seatback tablet-holder, which can also provide storage for magazines.

Sadly this sentence should have been written the other way around – and also had a lot of caveats attached!

This was the picture they released:

BA promotinoal picture of tablet holder… and it was those strange metal loops sticking out the sides that first grabbed my attention as I struggled to work out how it worked. It  looked like a fabric flap came over the front of the seat pocket. But how did it grip the tablet? What did the loops do?

Well the metal loops are just part of some weird case that BA have fitted to the iPad they have used in the images. And the flap is the cover of the case attached to the iPad. You can see that a bit more clearly in these two images that appeared in BA’s ‘The Club’ e-magazine:

BA promotional image of seat back tablet holderBA promotional image of a passenger using a tablet attached to the seat back[That is the first useful thing I have ever seen in ‘The Club’ … which really ought to be reviewing ‘red pens’!]

Okay, so you need a case with a flap for your tablet, fine. But how does it attach? Well… it doesn’t! I’ve looked in detail all over the seat back, there is no method I could find to make it grip or hold the flap. No elasticated strap, no magnets that I could detect. Indeed, all I could see when I looked inside was a bit of plastic rubbish:

Looking inside BAs new shorthaul seat back pocketThis is what the pocket looks like with the tray table down:

New BA seat back pocket with the tray table downSo how did they attach the iPad in their promotional images-  where the pocket is empty of magazines? I have no idea!

However there is good news…

… with the three BA magazines in there (Business Life, HighLife and the High Life Shop), they held the cover flap of my iPad mini case (which is the official Apple leather case) relatively well and could certainly support the iPad Retina Mini without issue.BA iPad mini holderIt did however result in the screen of the mini leaning up a bit, this was actually a very comfortable viewing angle for me but differs from the pictures.

I do still very much welcome the relocation of the seat pocket to the top, but I wouldn’t be touting it having an iPad holder as such.

And if you have an iPhone, including the new larger screen iPhone 6 and jumbo screen iPhone 6+, well you are back to having a tired arm:

Apple iPhone 6 held up to BA new seat back… or back into “GhettoIFE” territory (scroll to bottom)

If I have missed something about how the new BA seat pocket is supposed to grip the flip cover of the iPad case, please let me know!

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