We did an early review of Sena’s super slim Florence case for the iPad 2. I loved this thin profile of the case as well as the “typical” Sena quality. The leather was gorgeous, the fit and finish were fantastic and, overall, I was quite pleased. I especially liked the fact that the Florence maintained the curved look and feel of the iPad 2′s back.
All was not perfect though. I found the magnets used for the auto sleep/awake functionality were a bit hit or miss. If things were perfectly lined up the iPad would wake up even though the cover was over the screen. I also found the leather used to frame to iPad to be a bit on the thick side and there were moments when it seemed to get in the way. There’s weren’t deal-breakers, far from it, but they were issues that I felt the need to point out. Moreover, the comments on that initial review indicated that I was not alone in finding some areas of improvement when it came to the Florence. Don’t get me wrong, it was a good case. It just wasn’t a “perfect” case.
One of the things I have come to appreciate and respect about Sena is that in addition to their quality products they take feedback quite well. Moreover, they are one of those companies that will go back and tweak a product even after it has been released. I encountered this with one of the cases I reviewed for the original iPad and, once again, they have refined a case once released. The result is that the company was kind enough to send me one of the Sena Florence for iPad 2 Rev2 cases so I might take a second look.
Before we get into the refinements lets take a look at Sena’s description of the Florence.
The Florence is a great companion to your iPad 2 for those who enjoy creative versatility. It is made to work with comfortable angles while you watch movies, play games, type a out a novel or even create art like an Italian artist. This foldable genuine leather skin design is comprised of premium leather providing a soft layer to gently protect your iPad 2. The integrated 2 position folding cover provides the versatility you need. Offered in classic genuine leather, the Florence is perfect for any creative or elegant setting. The secure cover with simple corner tucking closure provides a snug fit to your iPad 2. It is individually handcrafted from the finest genuine Napa leather with Sena’s well-known quality and strong attention to detail. The Florence allows you the versatility you need for you to enjoy seamless function with your iPad 2.
Hand-crafted from the finest quality full grain, genuine leather
Slim leather book style design
Integrated 2 position folding cover
Use iPad 2 while in case
Watch videos while in case
Type while in case
Simple corner tucking closure
Soft velvet lining with light protective layer
Cutouts for play-thru functionality
Charge/sync port opening
Easy device access
Sena craftsmanship and quality
As you can see the Florence is a simple case. There are no snaps to keep it closed. Instead there is a little pocket in the lower right hand corner that…
The cover can tuck into.
Here’s a closer look.
The back of the Florence is unchanged. It still has that nice curved back, the Sena tab for the case’s “stand” functionality and the precise cutouts for the camera, headphones, dock connector, speaker volume and mute/rotation lock.
The iPad 2 still slides into the case and is then framed by leather that wraps around the screen. The tab for “locking” the iPad in place is still there. (Personally I love this system for holding the iPad in place.)
Once inside the Florence fits the iPad like a glove.
If you flip the cover over and slip it into that extra tab of leather on the back it creates a triangle not dissimilar to the functionality of Apple’s SmartCover.
It is just about as simple a system for turning a case into a stand as you will find and… it works great.
You can then have the iPad 2 sit on your table or desk at a perfect angle for easy viewing or typing. (although the angle is a bit steeper than I tend to like.)
Or you can set the iPad on its end and let the narrow side of the triangle serve as the base. This is ideal if you are watching videos on your iPad 2.
Here’s a look from the back.
If you go read out initial review of the Florence all of this looks the same. So what, if anything, is different in this updated version? There are a few things.
The “sleep/awake” functionality has been improved thanks to a new magnet and the overall design has been slightly tweaked so that the case is an even better fit than before. In other words, the biggest improvement in the case addresses the biggest issue I had with the original verison- the Smart Sleep/Awake functionality. And overall I think Sena succeeded. The case does seem to be more responsive to putting the iPad to sleep when the cover is placed over it and tucked into the corner. I tested the case over and over and it seem to work properly each and every time. It was still a bit finicky about STAYING off but that only seemed to happen once or twice and I suspect it will improve even further as the leather wears in and softens.
As far as the improved fit, I thought the original Florence fit amazingly well so I really didn’t see a need for updating it. At the same time the “pocket” that keeps the cover closed DOES seem to work a bit better and the leather that “frames” the iPad seems a bit thinner and more comfortable on this case. The Rev2 case also has a line of thread on the leather frame that surrounds the iPad. I’m not sure what purpose this serves and, quite frankly, I can see if being problematic as your finger rubs across the leather while touching the screen.
On balance the improvements are enough that this Florence Rev2 will be my “daily driver” for the foreseeable future!
The Sena Florence for iPad 2 is available in Black, Tan, Red and Brown and can be ordered directly from the Sena website.
What I Like: Sena style, quality and construction; Includes smart Sleep/Awake functionality; doubles as a two-position stand; gorgeous; Sleep/Awake function is improved over Rev1; leather frame around the screen seems thinner than before
What Needs Improvement: Sleep/Awake function still a tiny bit finicky, new line of thread running around the leather “frame” surrounding the iPad