UPDATE: You can get the Smart Cover from as low as $26 from Amazon. Thanks to Simon’s helpful comment below.
The long-awaited iPad 2 is now available. Although the screen size is still 9.7”, the new iPad is slimmer and slightly smaller than its predecessor. Those of you who resisted the impulse of buying an iPad as Christmas present can have it now for the same price but with the new operating system from Apple, iOS4 and with lots of additional functions such as dual video cameras, gyroscope, HDMI video out and magnetic screen covers.
The magnetic screen covers are called “Smart Covers” and they surely live up to their name, thanks to a series of interesting features which we are going to talk about here. This is not a hands-on review of the iPad 2 Smart Cover, since it’s yet to become available for purchase, but a description of its main features and benefits that make it awesome.
First of all, the Smart Cover addresses the issue some iPad users had, that it was a shame to cover such a beautiful design with a case. For the iPad 2, the case was designed right alongside the product, and the result was a cover for the glass screen. The back of the new iPad is made from durable aluminum, therefore it doesn’t need protection.
The Smart Cover attaches to the iPad 2 via magnets and it bends and folds around, revealing the screen and at the same time offering support for typing or watching movies. There are magnets not only inside the cover but also inside the iPad 2, therefore the cover will snap onto the iPad in the correct position every time. It’s so easy to attach or remove the Smart Cover, that you can have more than one, so you’ll be able to match it with the colors of your outfits.
Apple will provide the Smart Covers in ten colors, five in polyurethane and five in leather.
The cover is padded with a microfiber lining which cleans the screen any time you move it.
Another interesting feature is that the cover automatically wakes up the iPad when you open it and puts it to sleep when you close it. This will be a great battery life saver.
The price announced by Apple is $39 for the polyurethane covers and $69 for the leather covers. We are going to update this article with a list of online stores where you can order your Smart Cover as well as other iPad 2 accessories.