There have been so many awesome iPad 2 cases released already this year, I know because our storeroom is packed full of test units! However, of all the cases we’ve reviewed ten stood out, often for different reasons, as it’s certainly not a situation where one case fits all. So without further ado I present:
The Top Ten Best iPad 2 Cases for 2011
1. ZAGGmate Keyboard Case for iPad 2
ZAGGmate was, without a doubt, the most popular case for the original iPad last year. And this year ZAGG has done it again with the ZAGGmate Keyboard Case for iPad 2, which has already picked up MacWorld’s coveted “Best of Show” award for 2011. This case is my personal favorite, and my iPad doesn’t leave home without it. It’s also a high quality gadget in its own right, with this year’s model featuring a top-of-the-line Logitech Bluetooth keyboard (I love Logitech, their keyboards and mice are great, their MX Anywhere mouse is the best I’ve ever used).
The look and feel of the ZAGGmate is really as good as it gets in terms of complimenting the iPad, with the case being made out of the same bead-blasted, anodized aluminum as the iPad itself. Here’s a funny little aside which proves the point:
When I was visiting my parents a few days ago I flipped my iPad 2 out of its ZAGGmate and went into the living room, leaving the case in the kitchen. Mom called out in a concerned voice: “Dear, you’ve left part of your iPad on the kitchen table”. If that doesn’t say how much the ZAGGmate compliments the iPad’s design, I don’t know what does.
The ZAGGmate exudes the same high quality and elegance that all Apple products have. But the real reason I love the ZAGGmate is that having a keyboard is so damn handy. It’s not that I don’t flip it out of its case all the time to play Angry Birds, or read Flipbook, but I find the ZAGGmate is just essential when I want my iPad to double as a notebook, and it happens a lot!
ZAGG really have thought of everything; this case also puts the iPad to sleep when you place it in the case, just like the Smart Cover does. It doubles as a stand, in both portrait and landscape modes. It’s also very protective (though I use a screen protector on the back, also from ZAGG, so the iPad won’t pick up scratches on the exposed side). And if all that wasn’t enough, this device has elegance to boot.
This is without a doubt the number one iPad 2 case for 2011. If you want more information everything you need to know is on ZAGG’s website.
2. Padova II iPad 2 Case
Padova II is a full protection premium leather case for iPad 2 with built-in Smart Cover technology. This exquisite case is made to measure for your iPad 2 and it is stitched by hand for perfect fit.
The premium vegetable tanned Italian leather and the brushed metal Home button are only two of the details that recommend this case as the best choice for really elegant people.
The front flap becomes a viewing stand, suitable for both landscape and portrait orientation. Padova II also features a removable metal typing stand.
You can see more details, choose your color and pre-order the case on the Orbino website.
3. Barely There iPad 2 Case
Well-known to iPhone 4 fans, Barely There is now available for iPad 2 as well. It features the same slim profile, adding almost no bulk to the iPad. The impact resistant, hard-to-break flexible shell covers and protects the back and the corners of the iPad. Barely There is a beautiful snap-on case, but it’s not compatible with Apple’s Smart Cover. If this is not a deal breaker for you, you can buy the Barely There from Case-Mate.
4. Twelve South BookBook for iPad and iPad2
The Twelve South BookBook is a hardback leather case which fits both iPad and iPad 2. As opposed to many cases on our list, this one makes a perfect contrast to the modern curves and materials of the iPad. Handmade from genuine leather, the Twelve South BookBook looks and smells vintage. It is more a piece of art rather than a simple case.
Despite its simplicity, this case enables you to charge your iPad while inside, thanks to the double zipper closure which you can unzip only a little, just to allow a cable to pass through.
The case folds as stand. Unlike many other folios, the Twelve South BookBook allows you to set the viewing angle as you like, thanks to a simple but highly functional “tassel and button mechanism”. The padded interior is smooth and protective against scratches, the corners of the case are reinforced to resist impact and the hard inner frame protects against accidental crush of the iPad.
We found the Twelve South BookBook for iPad and iPad 2 on Amazon.
5. iPad 2 Street Skin
The iPad 2 Street Skin from Hard Candy Cases is a form-fitting case featuring a magnetic integrated screen cover. By the time we wrote our Street Skin review, the case was to be released in black, pink and clear. Now it’s also available in white, as part of the White Collection of iPad 2 accessories recently launched by Hard Candy Cases. Be it you want to go for the White Swan or the Black Swan, you can find the iPad 2 Street Skin on eBags.
6. Miniot Cover
Miniot is a very beautiful cover which also rolls into a three-way stand. You can also snap it to the back for handheld use of the iPad, as you can see from the image below:
The Miniot iPad 2 Cover is made from real wood and it is available in five different finishes or in a custom setup of your choice. You can also have custom engraving on the cover, free of charge. The cover has built-in magnets which keep it attached to the glass screen. The Ultrasuede microfiber lining is very smooth, so it won’t scratch the iPad screen. You can see more details or buy this cover on the Miniot website. The Miniot Cover is made in Holland. International shipping is available.
7. Kensington KeyFolio Keyboard Accessory Case
The Kensington KeyFolio Keyboard Accessory Case is durable and good-looking, despite the fact that it’s made from artificial leather. It is better than other keyboard folios because Kensington is a reputable name in the tech world, the materials they use in their keyboards, connectors or switches are of excellent quality. The case doesn’t have magnets, therefore it doesn’t interact with the iPad compass. However, this means that it doesn’t support the iPad 2 Sleep function either. You can read our review of Kensington KeyFolio Keyboard Accessory Case here.
8. The Smart Cover from Apple
“Clever” and beautiful, the Smart Cover quickly gained its place in the hearts of many Apple fans. Sleek and slim, foldable as stand, extremely easy to attach and to remove, this cover is the perfect companion for the iPad 2. Well, if you don’t believe that the back of the iPad 2 is scratch-resistant, you’d better go for a threesome and buy one of these cases that work with the Smart Cover. As of the Smart Cover itself, we found it at an excellent price on Amazon, where you can also read more about it. You are welcome to read our iPad 2 Smart Cover review as well.
9. GumDrop Drop Series Military Edition Case
You don’t have to be in the army to keep your iPad protected in military style. The Military Edition of GumDrop Drop Series iPad 2 Cases will keep your iPad protected as if you were on the battlefield. This extra rugged case features several protective layers, as you can see from the image above. It comes with microfilm dust filters and built-in privacy screen. We found the Military Edition iPad 2 case on Amazon.
10. Speck PixelSkin HD Wrap
The Speck Pixelskin HD Wrap took the Smart Cover from Apple one step further: it’s more than a cover, it’s a full hard-shell case. Unlike the Smart Cover, this case doesn’t use magnets but microsuction to stay closed. This also means that it doesn’t come with the iPad 2 Sleep function. The Speck Pixelskin HD Wrap weighs 9.6 ounces, so it makes the iPad noticeably heavier. However, it is very protective, perfect for traveling. This case is available on Amazon.
We were only going to list the top 10, but one case was late to the party, and although we had a look at a very nice review unit, you can only pre-order it at this point in time. However it’s an extremely nice and innovative design, so we have included it here as the “11th Case”.
11. Grove iPad 2 Case
The Grove is another “smart” case for iPad 2, meaning that it has the power to put the iPad to sleep when closed. The case body is made from bamboo. The front cover is made from leather and it folds into a triangle-shaped stand. If you want to know more details, read our Grove iPad 2 Case review.
What do you think of our 11 best iPad 2 cases list? Would you add some other case to it? Would you leave anything out? Please have your say!