Friday, August 12, 2011

iPad2 cover story

There is a myriad of cases, covers, folios and shells out there for the iPad2, the choice on covers alone on stretches to over a 1000 hits, so what to go for?

As a little experiment, I have purchased a few to see what they are like, the folio, the smart and the hard (with keyboard) - it all sounds like the Good, the Bad and the Ugly, but far from it.

The folio case was a top of the range leather number, that came in a well packaged box, and looks similar to a Filofax. The iPad snugly fits in and is protected both front and back, there are also pockets etc. for the American Express and Tesco's Club Card, the cover, can also be used to prop up the device for easy reading etc.  For the high flying executive in us, this was a very professional looking cover, but was also the most expensive.

The iPad2 Smart Cover is a completely different animal.  The Smart Cover clips onto the iPad via magnets, and like a roller blind, covers the screen of the iPad.  When you want to use your device, you just flip it over and it sticks to the back, alternatively the roller blind effect can be 'rolled' to form a stand for view the iPad upright.  There are a couple of downsides from my point of view: 1) it is only landscape, i.e. it swivels on the long edge, therefore you cannot 'prop' the iPad up on portrait mode, 2) it only protects the screen, not the back of your £400 investment, and 3) I think they are a bit on the pricey side for what the are, probably because they are endorsed by Apple.

The Aluminium Cover with Bluetooth keyboard is another option, personally my favorite at the moment.  Again this slips over the face of the iPad to protect the screen, but does nothing to protect the back of your toy - it is lgiht and reasonably tough.  I use a neoprene bag to slip the iPad into (my gimp bag I call it). 
I bought this item on ebay for about £30 and the quality probably represents that, the keyboard is adequate but not as nice as my Apple keyboard, the Bluetooth seems to be a tad hazy as well, once it has disconnected I find I am having to turn the keyboard power off and on to re-connect.  It comes with a rechargeable lithium battery and a USB charging cable.
You can see by the picture, that to all intents and puroses, the cover is in fact a 'tray' with a keyboard in it, I wonder how long it will take to fill up with crumbs from my toast in the mornings...

I may update this blog once I have played with this item a bit more, but at the moment, it makes writing e-mails, blogs, tweets etc. very easy.

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