What is being reviewed?
Up for review today is the Vacuum Dock + Whale Tail from Octa. This accessory is designed for use with tablets and ereaders and is currently available and selling for $49.95. As the name implies, this accessory is made of two pieces — the vacuum dock and the whale tail and when used together, they seem to make a rather sturdy and flexible stand.
Disclaimer: The Octa Vacuum Dock + Whale Tail was provided to GadgeTell for the purpose of this review.
The Octa Whale Tail touts features to include being an all-in-one handle and stand solution for your tablet or ereader, to being a stand that is compact, mobile and comfortable in your hand, to being able to provide a full range of portrait and landscape positions and to working well with smooth, non-porous cases and protective shields. Oh, and for those who happen to be curious, the Octa weighs in at less than 6 ounces. WIth that, continue on to read my thoughts and my bottom line on the Octa.
Before diving in with my thoughts, let me first say that we discovered the Octa during CES. This little gadget was sitting towards the back. You know, the locations where many tech bloggers fail to venture. The point here, I sort of already liked the Octa, even before they reached out to us here at GadgeTell looking to send over a review unit.
Anyway, before I stray any further off track, lets shift focus back to the task at hand — the review of the Octa Vacuum Dock + Whale Tail. First, the product ships in a rather small box which includes the vacuum dock and whale tail portions as well as a rather nice carry bag. You will have to attach the tail to the dock portion, but otherwise, you are good to go immediately. For those wondering why the tail is detachable from the dock, Octa notes that the dock will be compatible with “future Octa TabletTail accessories.” Future products aside, this one works well.
The dock and tail feel solid. And without using the whole ‘feels good in your hand’ line, I will say this — the Octa feels durable, not cheap. It feels like something that you will be able to use for a long time without worry of it breaking or falling apart. Actual use is about as simple as could be, place the dock on the device you want to prop up and use the suction. Octa suggests five pumps of the vacuum for maximum hold. My experience, a few pumps will work just fine. With the dock and stand attached, I was able to prop my iPad up in just about any position I needed. The tail portion is rather flexible and seems to hold up well. You can even bend it almost all the way over to use as sort of an in-hand handle.
The bottom line
Initially I had thought that the Octa was a bit on the pricey side. It is currently selling for $49.95. However given that I have been using it with a $600 (plus) tablet, the price of Octa suddenly seems right in-line with what I would expect to pay. After all, if you spent all that on a tablet, why cheap out on the accessories.
Aside from that train of thought, the Octa really is a joy to use. It is a simple product and a product that works well. It serves as a stand and/or a handle and it does a great job at both. Plus, using this as a stand for my iPad when sitting at a local outdoor coffee shop, the few folks that inquired seemed impressed. Not to mention, those same folks all seemed to enjoy that it is actually shaped like a whale tail. Bottom line, I like and I do recommend.
Product [Octa Vacuum Dock + Whale Tail]