iPad cases: Models for every occasion

Alternatives are popping up for cases for the iPad. From functional to elegant, there are choices for everyone.

I previously wrote about a site that helps you narrow the search for the perfect iPad case. Well, before I found that site I purchased Apple's own iPad case. The case itself is one of the better ones on the market and what it lacks in looks it makes up for in functionality.

First, the Apple iPad case is super thin and fits the iPad like a glove. This is an important feature if you tend to take your iPad on the road and want to ensure that both the front and back stay protected while you travel. Second, it features a unique design that lets you fold the back cover over and then hook it into the case. This feature props up the iPad just right for typing and also for standing on its own for viewing photos or videos. In fact, it works so well that I am typing this article on the iPad using the Apple case.

I mentioned above that it lacks in looks. If looks are important to you there are plenty of options. One such option is the Leather Folio from Belkin. I have been testing it out for a couple of weeks now and have found it to be a great alternative to the iPad case. For one, it looks like a professional folio, sporting a leather front, back and insides, and even offers a strap that locks the case closed for travel. The strap is actually my favorite part of the case and I would be using it as a primary if it offered the ability to prop the iPad for typing, like the Apple case. The Leather Folio for iPad is actually an attractive looking case and I have surprised people when opening it and revealing an iPad, since they thought it was a standard folio and expected to see paper inside instead of an iPad.

The biggest downside to both cases so far is the inability to store anything else besides the iPad. I understand that we're not supposed to need paper anymore, but inevitably we are forced to carry some. It's for this reason that my search for the perfect case continues.

To be fair, you can't go wrong with either case, but if you do a fair amount of typing while on the road, the Apple iPad case is preferred. However, if you just want to use the iPad for light typing or be able to toss it into a bag with other devices without having to worry about it getting scratched up, the Belkin case is the one for you.

One more thing: the Apple iPad case forces you to use the iPad with the home button to the left. This is fine except for the fact that the standard on iPhone landscape applications was to have the home button to the right. This presents an issue when using the case since if you are using a game that was designed for the iPhone, sometimes you have to lay it flat and turn the iPad around in order to use the app. It's a minor point but one that makes me wonder why Apple would change the default landscape orientation yet again.

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