This is the first in a series of reviews of iPad 2 cases that wrap around the back and sides. Some also come with a screen protector, and the Scosche snapSHIELD p2 is one of those.
The Scosche snapSHIELD p2 iPad 2 case is made of polycarbonate, and is fairly stiff. The case I received for review is the clear one, but there are other colors available. This case reminds me of the polycarbonate case I had for my MacBook Pro. It ships in a plastic bag, like this:
Scosche Packaging - plastic bag & cardboard header
Included is a screen protector, and I’ll speak to that in a minute. Of course, like all good cases for the iPad, there are openings for every port, control, or opening like the speaker.
The snapSHIELD p2 snaps on and stays there securely, yet is easy to remove. That sounds hard to do, but Scosche has done a great job with that. The fact that the polycarbonate gives a little bit is the key. Because the case I received is clear, the Apple logo and all the text on the back of the iPad remain visible. The edges that come around to the face clip nicely, but don’t get in the way.
Here’s a photo of the back of the iPad that shows how it wraps around and remains open at the bottom. The Scosche logo overlays nicely and doesn’t cover text on the back of the iPad.
View of iPad 2 back and snapSHIELD cutouts
What I Liked
The polycarbonate, when placed snuggly over the iPad’s aluminum back creates a certain feeling of solidity for the entire product without adding much weight. It’s just a nice feeling. But best of all, the polycarbonate has a great surface feel. It’s incredibly smooth yet doesn’t make you feel like it might slip from your fingers. That’s the best I can describe it. You have to feel it to appreciate it, but it’s a great feeling. That said, I found that the iPad in this case will tend to slide on a hard, smooth slanted surface, so be careful there. (Gel cases don’t suffer as much from that.)
I liked the available colors: clear, smoke, purple, pink and blue. Except for the clear case, these are transparent, mildly saturated colors that look handsome. Even so, the product page shows the Apple logo showing through even for the colored cases. On the website, you can click on the thumbnails and see a larger picture of the case with the desired color. Very cool.
I thought the instructions for applying the protective screen were very good and the feedback postcard is terrific. You don’t see feedback postcards very often these days.
Instructions and postcard
What I Didn’t Like
I applaud Scosche for including a screen protector. Given that, I am not one of those who can apply these protectors successfully. There’s always a speck of dust that floats in and creates a little bubble that can’t be pushed out. There is always some other bubble I can’t get rid of.
However, the protector is well designed. You get a microfiber cloth to clean the iPad’s display. (I went over it with iKlear first.) There are two sheets that protect the primary plastic. You peel off the back and apply. Then you use a credit card to squeegee out the bubbles. The top sheet protects the main sheet while you do that. When you’re done, peel off the top sheet that protects the protector.
I think that if you’re experienced at this and work in very clean, dust free space, you can be successful. But for me, I am just never satisfied with less than optical perfection, so I tend not to use these products.
The plastic bag packaging seems like a rather cheap way to present and to ship the product, but mine was packed well and arrived undamaged. Other products like this use a stiffer plastic or full cardboard package.
Making the Case
I won’t let my own difficulties with screen protectors affect this review, and I’ll just focus on the case itself. It has a magnificent feel, it’s sturdy, smooth, yet easy to grip, easy to remove, reveals the iPad logo, and keeps the bottom edge of the iPad 2 well away from the metal of my Keynamics stand. Finally, the price is in the right range for this kind of case. In terms of the case itself, it’s practically perfect.
A Note About iPad Cases
The kind of iPad case you need depends on how you use your iPad. If you travel frequently, you may want a folio case or the Apple iPad Smart Cover that protects the face. However, my iPad tends to be in my office on my Keynamics iPad stand or in my lap on the couch. There are no kids in the house, just well behaved cats. So my iPad remains fairly protected, and what I am interested in is “swipe and go.” I don’t want anything else wrapped around the iPad that will get in my way while it’s on my lap, and what I really need is something to protect that back and sides from grit or sticky stuff on my desk or the coffee table. That’s the special appeal of this kind of case.
I reviewed a similar case for the iPad 1 last year from Newer Technology. NewerTech says they won’t be making a similar case for the iPad 2.
Certain folio cases just don’t work well with a stand like this