One of the things I have come to understand and appreciate is that there is no “right” case for the iPad. There are a variety of cases available for it to be sure but none of them is “the right case”. Rather, with the iPad perhaps more than with any other device, the appropriate case depends upon how you’re using the device at a particular moment. Let me explain what I mean.
If you are going to be using the device on the go and will be throwing it into a briefcase it makes sense to have a case that is permanently affixed and includes screen protection. In this scenario a folio style case may be the best choice.
If, however, you are primarily going to be watching videos on the iPad a case that has a built in stand that keeps it at the appropriate angle may be the best choice.
And if you’re going to be leaving the iPad on the coffee table where can be quickly picked up to browse the web, read a magazine or use it as a remote, a case that leaves the screen is open and accessible maybe best.
So, unlike other devices, when speaking about cases for the iPad I think it’s also important to try to conceive of the “usage scenarios” for that particular case.
Case in point — the Speck Fitted for iPad. This is a case that is well-made, quite nice, and is perhaps best suited for those people who are leaving the iPads on the coffee table or desk and want to be able to pick it up quickly start using it.
Let’s take a look.
It feels really good, this case does. And it looks good, too. Sleek, stylish, a hint of sophistication and smarts; this hard-shell case with matte soft-touch coating becomes even more impressive if you match the fabric-wrapped back to your outfit, scarf, or tie. Fabric-wrapped hard shell case gives a fabulous tailored look
Original fabric patterns on a form-fit two-piece hard shell
Soft-touch matte coating on case shell
Access to all buttons, controls and 30 pin connector while in the case
The Fitted for iPad is a simple two piece shell. That’s it. There is no stand or screen protector in the package (although Speck now sells a high quality screen protector on its own for the iPad).
Getting the iPad in the case is quite easy. As Speck explains…
Place your iPad into the back half of the case, making sure you have it set the right way (check the headphone plug and 30-pin connector for alignment with the cutouts). Place the front of the case on top, again, checking for alignment to make sure you have it the right way. Start at one corner, and snap the two pieces together, going all the way around the edges till the two pieces are firmly seated together on all sides. To remove the Fitted iPad case, start at the button cutout on the side, and gently pull the top half away from the bottom half. Working your way around to the corners, un-snap all the way around until the two pieces are completely separated.
The back of the fitted is covered with a nice cloth that is firmly affixed to the hard protective shell. When Elana first saw it she commented how much she liked the look. When she touched it she commented that she loved the way it feels and liked the fact that it would make it easy to keep a firm grip on an otherwise slippery device.
The materials, design and construction of the Fitted are all first rate. The iPad fits inside tightly. This is probably not a good choice it you have a permanent skin on your iPad.
The bottom of the case has one large opening that leaves the speaker and the dock connector free and accessible. It should come as no surprise that the iPad sync/charger dock and keyboard dock are not usable while the iPad is in the case since, unlike the CandyShell it does not have a hinge to expose the area more fully.
The top has two openings. One is for the mic and speaker plug and the other is for the power/sleep button.
One side has an opening for the volume rocker and the rotation lock slider. Other than that the device is fully protected.
As you can see in all the above screen shots, the fabric is bonded to the inner shell quite tightly and with no stray threads. It makes for a refined case with a good finish.
While the screen is not protected the Fitted does have a bit of a lip that surrounds the screen and offers some protection for times when, for example, you might accidently lay the iPad face-down on a desk.
Overall I really like the Speck Fitted for iPad. It is comfortable to hold, doesn’t add too much bulk or weight and, tanks to the fabric back, makes it easy to get and keep a secure grip on the device. This isn’t a case I would use all the time since I am using the iPad as a “notebook replacement” and therefore carry it with me in a bag but if your iPad it primarily for home use it is a great choice. If I have one complaint about the Speck Fitted for iPad it is the price. At $49.95 for just a shell that wraps around the iPad it is not inexpensive. Then again, it is in the same ballpark as most cases of this type although it does not include a stand or a screen protector.
The Fitted for iPad adds 9.6 oz. to the device and is available in Houndstooth Gray, Fadeaway Gray/Black/Green, Fadeaway Gray/Black/Pink, ClassicPlaid Pink & Gray, Black & White Plaid. It has an MSRP of $49.95.
What I Like:
Looks and feels good, well-designed and constructed, leaves all ports and controls accessible, add “grip” to the device
What Needs Improvement:
Offers no screen protection, priced at $50 but includes no extras like a screen protector or stand, offers no way to prop up the device for viewing or typing
Best Usage Scenario:
This is a great case if you leave your iPad laying on the coffee table or desk.