That’s my lovely new iPad 2 Smart Cover up above. It’s one of the newly added dark gray polyurethane models.
I’d been wanting to try out one of the polyurethane models for quite a while, as I’ve only ever used the leather one I bought on iPad 2 launch day.
I took the new smart cover out of its box two minutes ago, and figured I should grab a photo of it while it as clean as it will ever be. So far I quite like the dark gray – though it’s too soon to make any comparisons on using the polyurethane as opposed to the leather one of course.
If I spot any interesting differences in using this new model I’ll be sure to share some thoughts on them here.
So my iPad 2 and its lovely smart cover have a new companion. A new ultra-light Gelaskin for the back of the iPad 2. It’s called Cable Cranes and the artwork is by Nanami Cowdroy.
It’s funny – my writing colleague and friend Thomas Wong got this gelaskin months ago and I thought it looked a bit too busy for my taste when I first saw it. But it has grown on me, so after my recent removal of a ZAGG leatherskin from the iPad 2 and an attempt at re-applying my first Gelaskin (Vintage Dr. Gonzo) I decided to order it. My re-application went pretty well by the way, but it had a couple little bits at the top that just wouldn’t stay on firmly anymore.
I received the new Gelaskin today and took about 15 minutes removing the previous one (which left the iPad 2 spotless and unscathed) and putting the new one on. I’m not at all sure why, but my best ever application of a Gelaskin was my first ever time doing it. After that, I’ve been a bit of a one-hit wonder, never quite churning out another
pop hit near-perfect install.
Today’s effort was OK – it hugs all the ports and buttons very nicely, but I got some little creases in a few places. They’re all totally my fault from moving just a bit too quick, but I’m content with the result for now. Oh, and I love the way this skin looks and of course the way it keeps the iPad 2’s wonderful lightness.
You can check out the Cable Cranes iPad 2 Gelaskin ($29.95) and all their other groovy designs here: http://www.gelaskins.com/store/tablets_and_ereaders/iPad_2/Cable_Cranes
ZAGG’s has just released LEATHERskins – a set of soft, think skins to apply to the back of the iPad 2 and perfectly match the colors of the iPad 2 Smart Cover.
There is a set of Leatherskins to match the colors of the polyurethane iPad 2 smart covers, and another set to match the colors of the leather iPad 2 smart covers. These skins are actually made of genuine leather, but they are applied like a film. They’re just 3mm thick and weigh only 1-2 ounces.
I have to say these look very good to me. I’ll be trying one out soon, to match my leather navy iPad 2 smart cover. These look like they could rival my current favorite setup for the iPad 2, with smart cover and a Gelaskin on the back.
The Leatherskins are priced at $49.99 or $79.98 with invisbleSHIELD screen coverage. For more details or to place an order check out the Leatherskins web page.
The iPad 2 Smart Cover is one of my favorite things about the latest version of the iPad. It feels so much like a perfect extension of the iPad 2 itself that I very rarely take it off. I started out with mixed feelings about the smart cover in early days with it, but the more I’ve used it the more I’ve grown to love it. It is now my iPad 2’s BFF.
I’ve been continually looking for the ideal companion for the iPad 2 smart cover, because I don’t like having the back of the iPad ‘naked’. I initially went with just a Ghost Armor screen protector for the back cover. That worked well enough and certainly offered stellar protection against nicks and scratches – but I wanted something a little more, or thought I did anyway. So I tried out several iPad 2 back cover cases that are compatible with the smart cover.
Most of the back cover cases I’ve tried have been very well made and are high-quality cases – for instance the Speck SmartShell for iPad 2 and the Incipio SmartFeather for iPad 2 – but they all made the iPad 2 feel much heavier to me. None of them actually weigh very much at all, and they feel very light when you hold them on their own, but once they’re on the iPad 2 it just loses that wonderful feeling of lightness that sets it apart from the original iPad.
This is another very basic iPad tip, but we’ve had a few questions about it in the comments on other posts, so I’ll share it again here. Many iPad and iOS users like to use a Passcode Lock for a bit of added security on their iDevices.
And a few of our readers have asked whether a Passcode Lock can still be used if you’re using the iPad 2 Smart Cover. The answer is Yes, you absolutely can.
Apart from turning Passcode Lock in Settings > General, there’s one additional setting you need to get right in order to have your passcode still work with the smart cover. This setting is located directly below the Passcode Lock entry, at Settings > General > iPad Cover Lock/Unlock. You need to ensure that that one is set to ON in order for the passcode lock to work each time you open and close the smart cover.
The Speck SmartShell Case for iPad 2 is a back cover case designed specifically to work with the Apple Smart Cover for the iPad 2. These cases have an instant appeal for me, because the more time I’ve spent with the iPad 2, the more I’ve come to love the smart cover.
The SmartShell is another ultra-thin, hard case style back cover for the iPad 2, similar to the Incipio SmartFeather for iPad 2 that I reviewed recently. Both of these look to be high quality back cover cases that play very nicely with the iPad 2 smart cover, so I’ve given the SmartShell a try very soon after testing the SmartFeather.
As I’ve mentioned here a lot lately, Apple’s iPad 2 Smart Cover has become my new best pal and my favorite iPad 2 case by a landslide margin. I’ve found a few full-protection sort of cases for the iPad 2 that are quite good, but I always find myself returning to the smart cover as my most-used option.
Recently I’ve also been trying out a handful of cases that are ‘iPad 2 smart cover compatible’ – i.e. cases that are back covers designed specifically to work as companions to the iPad 2 smart cover. I’m gradually discovering that even the lightest of these (that I’ve tried so far) make the iPad 2 feel quite a bit heavier.
This discovery has lead me to start thinking about more minimalist alternatives for use with the smart cover. I already use Ghost Armor screen protectors on the front and back of the iPad 2, so one option is to just stick with the smart cover and these. Another is to look at skins for the iPad 2. My friend and writing colleague Thomas (@ragart) has been singing the praises of Gelaskins – and this weekend I took a look and ordered a couple.
I’ve talked recently about how much I’ve grown to love the Apple iPad 2 Smart Cover. The more I’ve used it, the more it has become a real favorite for me. I enjoy it so much that I’ve recently started looking for cases that work well with it but offer a little more protection or the back of the iPad 2. Up until yesterday, whenever I used the smart cover, the only protection for the back of the iPad 2 is a screen protector.
Then I received the SwitchEasy CoverBuddy for iPad 2 in the mail yesterday – and it is now working nicely in tandem with the smart cover on my iPad 2. I’m only just getting to know the CoverBuddy but I’ve got a few quick first impression thoughts on it to share, along with a couple more pics of it in action.
I’ve always heard very good things about Piel Frama cases. The Spanish company has a strong reputation for the quality of its leather and cases for iOS devices. A comment earlier today from reader Glenys prompted me to take a look at their site and their iPad 2 offerings.
They have a number of gorgeous looking iPad 2 cases, but the iMagnum (shown above) is the one that really caught my eye. It’s a back-cover case for the iPad 2 that is intended to work with the iPad 2 smart cover. It comes in a range of colors that nicely match those of the Apple smart covers.
The idea of using an iPad 2 case that’s designed to work with the Apple smart cover is growing on me (more on that in a separate post soon) and I placed an order for an iMagnum today.
What do you all think of iPad 2 cases designed to work with the Apple smart cover?
When I first started using Apple’s smart cover for the iPad 2, I wasn’t too fond of it. As I used it a bit more I found that I had very mixed feelings about it – there were things I loved about it (like the automatic sleep/wake feature), and some things that really bugged me about it as well (like its lack of full protection).
Given my mixed feelings about the smart cover, and the fact that I loved its automatic sleep/wake functionality with the iPad 2, I thought that the best solution was to look for a full-protection case with support for the smart cover tech.
Over the last few weeks, I’ve used three cases that offer just that (full protection plus smart cover tech support), and they’ve all been pretty impressive and very good cases overall. Despite that, one thought that keeps occurring to me as I use those cases is how much I like the smart cover.
Using these other iPad 2 cases, as capable and attractive as they are, has shown me how much I miss using the smart cover itself and that it is easily my favorite cover for the iPad 2 at home. I find myself consistently coming back to the smart cover after using these other cases.
I’m still glad to have other cases around for the iPad 2, as I don’t fancy using only the smart cover when using it when I’m out and about – and they are more than good enough to use for any purpose, but they just don’t quite offer the level of comfort and ease of use that the smart cover does.
So yeah, as the post title says, the more iPad 2 cases I use, the more my affection for the smart cover is growing. My mixed feelings have become not mixed at all.
How about you? For those who have had the smart cover for a while now, how do you like it now? More than you did at first? Less?
Ivan asked a great question in the comments on my recent post with my thoughts about the iPad 2 Smart Cover – here’s that question:
All I want to know is this, with the Smart Cover on, and smart cover support, if I have a password set on my iPad, when one opens the Smart Cover, the iPad will STILL ask for my password, correct?
And the answer is: Yes, that is absolutely correct.
The smart cover’s automatic sleep/wake functionality does not bypass the passcode lock feature for the iPad 2. If you have turned on Passcode Lock in Settings then you will be prompted to enter your password just as always when the smart cover wakes the iPad 2.