How Smart is the iPad 2 Smart Cover?

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Would you be smart to buy a iPad Smart Cover? Apple designed the cover with the same brilliance they approach hardware design. The case will fold back to act as a prop when watching movies and videos. It folds up to tilt the screen when you need to type. The case was created to work with your device… the iPad will wake up when the Smart Cover opens and goes to sleep when the cover is closed. All of this sounds fantastic… but does it really stand up to the hype?

What’s interesting is that the magnets on the Smart Cover automagically home in on where they need to be when they come close to your iPad. They lock in place lickety-split. There’s no snapping, sliding or cursing involved when you add your cover like you see with other offerings on the market.

By having the cover control the sleep cycle of the iPad, you’re potentially saving on your battery life. Additionally, it can provide a thin layer of security. Let’s say you are in a coffee shop working on a top-secret presentation and a casual acquaintance walks over to say hello. Slide your Smart Cover in place and your screen won’t be seen by whomever may be nearby. You don’t have to fold your arms over the top of the screen or turn it upside-down. Just let your cover do its job and carry on your conversation.

One issue I’ve had with the Smart Cover is that it takes much more to push buttons – especially the Home button – than it does without the case in place. You have to actually grip the iPad before pressing the Home button, instead of just tapping with a finger. That isn’t really a huge deal, but it is slightly annoying. The device just isn’t as touch-responsive as it was before.

This little cover is definitely worth some money. Is it worth as much as Apple is charging? That is something only you can decide. Who am I to say how much any gadget or item is worth to you?

What are your thoughts? Have you gotten a Smart Cover yet? What are you looking forward to in the near future in terms of other cases and covers that will be released in stores?

iPad Accessories from Cyber Acoustics

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I love this iPad case so much that I’m going to give it to one of you. It’s the one I’ve been using on my iPad. I happen to have a replacement for it from the folks at Cyber Acoustics. They were blown away with the traffic you guys gave them, so they sent me a red one to replace this black one.

This leather case is not for everyone, I know. Many of you would prefer that it not be leather. That being said, this is a very, very good iPad cases. I use a LOT of different iPad cases, but this is simply the best one that I’ve tried.

It serves as a low angled prop for great comfort in typing mode, or as an upright stand to sit back and watch movies and video clips. There is felt on this inside. There are bands that hold it in place. It’s shock absorbent – seriously. I’ve dropped the iPad a couple of times and I have no troubles.

I love the way this sleek little case looks. It’s sleek and gorgeous. I enjoy being able to hold it in a couple of different ways, and stand it up in a few ways. It doesn’t look cheap – or feel cheap. It doesn’t matter that this was sent to me as a review unit… I mean what I say.

THIS is the case that Apple should have made.

If you want my Cyber Acoustics iPad case, leave a response in the comments thread. You can also tweet the URL for this video, or leave a comment on Facebook. As long as you leave a note somewhere about this video, you’ll be eligible to win this case.

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iPad Cases and Stands Roundup

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Over the course of the past month, I’ve received a handful of iPad accessories to try out. Most of these are stands or cases, and I wanted to try them out. Be sure to email me before you buy any of these products. I will do my best to get a coupon to you. With so many great things to choose from, how will I decide which is best for me?

I’ve been using the Griffin Elan Passport for a while now, but it may just be time for a change. I liked this particular product because it protects the iPad very well and it serves as both a stand and a case. If you wish to grab one of these for yourself or ANY of the Griffin products, be sure to use coupon code pirillo886 to save yourself some money.

Griffin also sent along the new Loop for my iPad. I love this little thing. It’s simple and unobtrusive. I use it in my living room. As you can see in the video, the iPad fits in there snugly in either portrait or landscape mode. I like that the grooves (notches?) in this stand are large enough to accomodate thin cases and covers.

The next stand in this montage is the UpStand from Just-Mobile. I really like this one. In fact, it’s been used on my desk right here in my home office ever since I received it. It looks great with the aluminum finish, and matches the decor around here well. It’s lightweight yet sturdy. It works very well, even with various cases on the iPad.

Another stand of sorts is the WedgePad. It’s sort of like a bean bag for the iPad. You can even strap your device in to keep it more stable. It works pretty well, and it’s definitely something different. It has a more relaxed look and feel for your surroundings.

Something I’m not likely to use on an ongoing basis came in from Hard Candy. The iPad case is actually difficult to get on. It certainly works alright, even if I’m not a huge fan of bright orange. They’ve made all of the appropriate slots in the case to accomodate the areas for charging and such.

The JAVOedge Fiber Axis case is very professional looking. It’s a nice carrying case. If you don’t really like skins this may be the product for you.

Speck sent along the CandyShell case and the See-Thru Satin case. The See-Thru case is both a translucent case AND a stand of sorts. It will work well with a docking station, which is cool. That’s an interesting idea. It feels very well constructed. The CandyShell is a rubberized shell. This product has the same flap in the back, which is cool. It’s shiny!! I love shiny! I’m not as happy about the logo being so large on the back, though.

The case that I have decided will be my new iPad case is the Cyber Acoustics Leather case. This company is local, hailing from Vancouver, Washington! I always like to support local companies whenever I can. It’s easy this time, since this is such a great product. It looks fantastic. There’s a piece of plastic on the inside to keep the device stable. There are rubber grips to hold it in place, and none of the speakers or ports are covered up. The Griffin Elan had that issue, which is why I’m not as happy with that item. This case also makes me feel nice and secure. It just FEELS like it’s secure as heck. You can also double-back one of the flaps and fold it into a well-stitched notch. Viola! You now have a stand, as well.

Each of the cases I’ve shown you are good products in their own rights. However, not all of them meet the needs that I have. We all look for different things, so any one of these could be just what YOU are looking for.

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On the Hunt for the Perfect iPad Case

Not long ago, I featured a guest blog post written by Adrian. He talked to us about the i.Con screen protector for the iPad. Adrian has written in again, this time to share with us their journey to find the “right” iPad cases.

Hi Chris,

I would like to thank you for sharing my previous letter about the “i.Con iPad Screen Protector” with your community. I hope that other people found the information and my experience helpful. In a related matter I was also considering buying the “NewerTech NuGuard Black Premium silicone Protective Casing for the iPad.” As I indicated in my previous letter to you; ordering from “Other World Computing” and shipping to Canada is much too costly. By the time everything is taken into account it is equal to Canadian retail prices. Again, I was impressed by–what looks like from the images on the website–a solid silicone casing from NewerTech, so I decided once again to see what similar options were available locally in Southern Ontario, Canada.

I found one that looks comparable to the NewerTech NuGuard case. It is the iFrogz Silicone Wrapz for iPad (click here for iFrogz coupons). Despite the disconcerting “Wrapz Rap” marketing that is shown on the product page, the product is actually quite good. I decided to order this product from the Bestbuy Canada website for $39.99 CDN ($29.99 US). The iFrogz Wrapz casing fits securely around the iPad, and it seems as though the back of it is slightly thicker to offer more protection. While this casing provides protection and more grip while holding the iPad, it does have a small down side. By the home button, on the edge where the iPad’s three speaker slits and USB connection port is located, the case’s silicone is a bit flimsy. it is understandable that the these areas of the casing needs to be exposed, but I think that the designers should have reinforced that entire edge with more silicone to compensate for those cutout portions of the casing. The end result its that the casing along that edge does not fit as tightly as I would like, but in any event it is only a minor drawback (perhaps I am too discerning regarding things that most non-geeks would consider inconsequential).

As I had explained in my previous email the iPad belongs to my Mom. After she held the device with the iFrogz silicone wrap on it she had two major concerns: she didn’t think that it would offer adequate protection if it were dropped, and she was afraid to put it in her bag with just the iFrogz case as protection. Another case was required. After a few days of research online we found the Tucano Doppio Neoprene iPad sleeve. We were in luck because our local Bestbuy stores are selling it (Canadian Bestbuy retail price = $44.99 + tax), and it was only $5.00 more than price on their official website price. We still had one more concern…would the iPad fit in the Tucano Doppio Sleeve with the iFrogz Silicone wrap still on the iPad. We decided to take the iPad into the store to test it out. While we were looking at the sleeve a Bestbuy employee approached us; he said that it might not fit. If he was correct and it indeed did not fit, he suggested trying the Belkin Pleated iPad Sleeve (Canadian Bestbuy retail price = $49.99). At this point I think that we were both praying that it did fit in the Tucano Doppio Sleeve because the Belkin option left something to be desired. The Belkin Sleeve has these ugly pleats in the side, it’s more cumbersome, and it’s more expensive. All things considered, the Belkin Sleeve is not nearly as stylish or as practical as the Tucano Doppio Sleeve. With the Belkin/the various other sleeves still on the horizon I slid the iPad –with the iFrogz Silicone casing on– into the Tucano Doppio Sleeve and… SUCCESS!! It fit perfectly and zipped up without any snags.

The black neoprene exterior of the Tucano Doppio sleeve will offer a high level of protection for the iPad. The interior where the iPad sits is made of a soft microfiber material. The Tucano Doppio has two sleeves on either side; one is for the iPad, and the other is for accessories/miscellany, respectively. I have been scrutinizing the Tucano Doppio sleeve to see if I could find any flaws. I have found none except for maybe the fact that they offer it in white as well. The white Tucano Doppio sleeve just seems like a bad idea for the same reason that wearing white shirts, pants, or sneakers is a bad idea…it will look terrible when it gets dirty. This is a valid concern because the sleeve will be handled numerous times during the course of your iPad usage lifetime.

Another piece of advice that I gave my Mom, and I would like to extend this advice to everybody else as well. DO NOT DROP THE iPad!! Even with these two levels of protection I still feel uneasy about the iPad™ taking any kind of shock by falling from either standing or table height. While I am confident that these two cases would mitigate the effects of a drop, I don’t think that it would benefit the iPad’s sensitive hardware in any way (especially the accelerometer).
I will include photos of these two products.

Well Chris, I would like to thank you for indulging me once more, and for you actually taking the time to read these emails. I can only hope that others benefit in some way from these experiences through which I have been.




What are your thoughts? What case have you chosen for your iPad or other notebook-type device… and why did you choose it?

Is This the Best iPad Case?

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I think I have found a case for my iPad that I am happy with. This is the Elan Passport from our friends at Griffin. The folio flips open to reveal your device, then closes like a book for privacy and protection, and its micro-suede lining protects your iPad from scratches and smudges. There are also pockets on the inside of the cover to hold your ID or other items.

I like this case a LOT. It’s easy to get the iPad in and out, and it fits in there nice and snuggly. It makes for a good stand no matter which way you want to turn it. It even looks nice. Everything I was looking for in a case is right here.

Don’t spend your money on Apple’s official iPad case. It’s not worth it. This Elan Passport from Griffin is a better solution. It’s clean. It’s uncluttered. It’s looks professional. It’s perfect.

Use 15% off Purchase + Free Shipping coupon code CJ1106 to lower the price.

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