Sunday 18 February 2024

Product review: MERU Flexzi 3

I recently bought the MERU Flexzi 3 which is a stand for my iPad (or it can be used for other devices) I’d been thinking about getting it for a while, especially after buying the Flexzi 1 stand which I attach to the frame of my wheelchair to mount my iPhone onto. The Flexzi 3 holds weightier items such as iPads.

Like most disability gadgets it wasn’t cheap (I did get VAT relief on it so that helped a little and postage was included) but I can say that it’s one of the best gadgets I’ve ever bought.

It comes in either black, green or pink and you can buy an extension kit to lengthen the gooseneck. It can be moved around quite easily in endless positions and with this product it comes with a part that can mean it can be clamped to a table as well as to a bar. Other options can be purchased from MERU such as iPad cases, additional Velcro patches and press buttons - depending on a person’s need. Personally I just bought online a clear iPad case to put my iPad into to attach it to the Flexzi 3. 

As well as using it to mount an iPad other devices could also be attached to the Velcro pad if you purchase extra patches. You could attach e-readers, mobile phones, or you could buy the camera mount too as another use of the Flexzi 3.

As you can see from the photo I just clamp it to the grab rail on the side of my bed. It’s designed well as sometimes I struggle with my hand function but I feel in the design process they considered the hand grip for tightening the clamp to be accessible to those with limited hand function.

The main reason I bought this was because I spend a lot of time in bed, especially reclined so I can manage my M.E. and symptoms like orthostatic intolerance, tachycardia and low blood pressure. It’s difficult to use an iPad or any device when you’re reclined or laid flat in bed. For so long I awkwardly tried to use my iPad in bed either trying to watch programs, videos, putting on an audiobook or podcast, typing emails or lists or blogging etc. Now I can put my iPad into the case mounted on the Flexzi stand and I can easily position it however I like depending on how I’m laid in bed and it’s just effortless. I can use my iPad as normal and it’s just made life so so so much more easy for me. Then when I don’t need my iPad on the stand I can take it out the case and put it in the case that doesn’t have the Velcro patch and use my iPad as normal, not on the stand such as if I want to take it to another room. I could even put a Velcro patch on a phone case and mount my phone onto this stand too. It’s totally revolutionised using my iPad from my bed.

The Flexzi 3 also has a part that can be taken off and slotted into the clamp to allow it to be attached to surfaces such as a tables, desk or tray.

As amazing as this product is and I’d still buy it I’d say the main downsides and possible barriers for some people being able to purchase this assistive device is the cost of the product even with VAT relief. For me it cost £80 which is a big chunk out of my PIP budget and I did have to save for it. Also the clamp is very big; I tried to clamp it on the other side so I wasn’t knocking myself on it but it really limited the movement range of the pink goosenecks so I would probably have to have bought the extensions so for not I’ve just put a small pillow to prevent unwanted knocks and injuries.

Despite the downsides I’d definitely say that the benefits that this product has brought me totally are worth it and it’s a product that I wish I’d gotten a long time ago.

I’d said for anyone who spends a lot of time in bed, or those who struggle to hold a devices this is the perfect product for you. With this Flexzi 3 you can clamp it to a bed rail, an over bed table, a wheelchair frame or table to name a few places.