I’ve found recently that waiting for iPad 2 cases is like the old saying about buses – you wait ages for one to come along and then three come at once. For a number of weeks I couldn’t find any cases for the iPad 2 that were ready to ship; they were all available for pre-order with shipping dates some weeks away. The few I found that promised slightly quicker shipping ended up being delayed and not arriving when expected. And then came last week – and I suddenly had five iPad 2 cases arrive within just a couple of days.
A more important discovery that I’ve made is that support for Apple’s smart cover tech in the iPad 2 is a must-have for me for iPad 2 cases. Even though I have mixed feelings overall about the iPad 2 smart cover, I have found that I love the automatic sleep/wake feature.
I love the feature so much that I don’t want a case that forces me to use the Power button. One out of the five cases I got in last week (that I’ll review here soon) doesn’t support the smart cover tech. It’s an otherwise very nice case, smart looking, versatile, and so on – but I quickly realize that it will be a very rarely or never used case, because it lacks the smart cover tech.
It feels a little crazy to me to be so enamored of one feature (of a case / cover!) that it becomes a dealbreaker, but that is where I’m at. From here on I’ll restrict my looking for iPad 2 cases to those that support smart cover tech or the smart cover itself.
How about all of you? Have you used the smart cover with your iPad 2? If so, do you love it / hate it / not feel too fussed about it? What are you looking for in an iPad 2 case?
Here’s something that doesn’t sound helpful for all of us who are waiting to see more third party iPad 2 cases that use the smart cover technology to connect via magnets with the iPad 2 and automatically sleep / wake the device. Despite the fact that their own heavily promoted Smart Cover for the iPad 2 is all about magnets, Apple’s own ‘Case Design Guidelines for Apple Devices’ document advises against the use of magnets.
Here’s the relevant section on this:
Case designs for Apple devices should avoid the use of magnets (for example, as closure devices) and magnetic materials. Cases with parts made of any metal should be tested to verify that they do not affect an Apple device’s built-in magnetic compass, if any.
Besides their effect on a built-in magnetic compass, magnets in cases can affect other sensors and electronic components. Cases should not include magnets unless there is no other practical design solution and only if they do not affect the operation of the Apple device in any way.
So presumably Apple is confident that their own Smart Covers have been tested thoroughly enough and that they do not have any adverse effects on the operation of the built-in compass or anything else on the iPad 2. I’ve already seen a couple of third party cases that use the smart cover tech, and I’m still hoping to see more – but seeing Apple’s guidelines on this now gives me a little doubt about whether these are going to be 100% ‘safe’ to use. I wonder what some of the leading case manufacturers feel about these guidelines.
What do you all think? Are you interested in using third party case with smart cover tech and magnets?
When I bought my iPad 2 on launch day last week, I also picked up an Apple Smart Cover for it. Even though I hated Apple’s case for the original iPad, the smart cover looked so different and so … smart, that I felt I had to give it a try.
The smart covers for the iPad 2 come in polyurethane or leather, and in a small range of colors for each material. I chose leather and the Navy color for mine. I’ve been using the smart cover for around a week now and have had it on my iPad 2 just about constantly. I have mixed feelings about the smart cover so far – there are some things I love about it, and others that I don’t like at all.
Hit the break for a quick rundown of my iPad 2 smart cover likes and dislikes …