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Best iPad Cases

Updated November 2018
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 28 Models Considered
  • 7 Hours Researched
  • 1 Experts Interviewed
  • 256 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Why trust BestReviews?
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.

    Shopping guide for best iPad cases

    Last Updated November 2018

    You spent a lot of money on your iPad. The last thing you want is for the screen to break when it slips through your hands and hits the floor. It’s a scenario that’s all too common, but there’s an easy solution: an iPad case.

    The trouble is, a lot of iPad cases are more fashionable than functional. The cases look sharp but leave essential components of the iPad exposed to potential damage. On the other end of the spectrum, there are heavy-duty cases that do an excellent job of protecting your iPad, but they’re so heavy and bulky that they can be cumbersome to carry around.

    And there are other considerations. Do you want a case with a stand? How about a keyboard? Do you need a built-in screen protector?

    BestReviews has done the hard word for you. We’ve put together this shopping guide to help you choose the iPad case that best matches your style and needs.

    Many iPad cases with stands have multiple settings, so you can choose the angle that best fits your needs.

    iPad case types

    iPad cases come in several styles. Three of the most common are the folio, shell, and sleeve.

    Folio

    A folio case protects the iPad the way a book cover protects the pages of a book. There are usually some straps to hold the iPad in place against the back side of the case while the front flap is loose and can be closed over the iPad or opened up and tucked behind it. Some folio cases have a zipper or strap, so you can securely store the iPad when it isn’t in use. Other cases have magnets to hold the cover on.

    Shell

    A shell case goes over the back and around the sides of the iPad, but it doesn’t provide any protection for the screen. Combined with a screen protector, a shell case can do a good job of protecting your iPad, depending on the quality of the case. The best ones have a lip around the edge so that if the iPad falls, the case will absorb most of the blow and help keep the screen from shattering.

    It’s common for shell cases to cover existing iPad buttons with buttons of their own. Sometimes, these don’t always sit flush to the iPad buttons, so you’ll have to press much harder in order to get them to work. It’s important to read through customer reviews before buying a shell case to see if that’s a problem with the one you’re considering.

    Sleeve

    These simple, soft cases protect your iPad and keep it from getting scratched inside your bag or backpack. These cases generally don’t offer a lot of protection against falls, so a sleeve case shouldn’t be your only line of defense. But combined with one of the other case types, it can help protect your iPad against damage.

    Top-notch, stylish protection

    This luxurious iPad case made of high-quality leather comes with a built-in stand with seven possible viewing angles. And you can choose from black, navy blue, and purple. It’s also drop-proof up to five feet and protected by a one-year warranty.

    iPad case features to consider

    Size and weight

    When choosing an iPad case, the most important thing to consider is size. Every iPad model is a slightly different size and shape, and it won’t do you any good if the case doesn’t fit your iPad. This information should be clearly indicated in the product’s marketing material.

    You also want to pay attention to the weight of the case, particularly if you take your iPad everywhere you go. It should be sturdy and durable, yet it also needs to be slim and lightweight enough to fit easily inside a bag or purse. Manufacturers also provide information about the case’s weight in the product information.

    Material

    You can find iPad cases made of several different materials. The most popular are leather, plastic, and polyurethane.

    • Leather: These iPad cases are elegant and usually well made, so you don’t have to worry about the case falling apart on you. Leather cases are usually more expensive than the other types, and you’ll have fewer choices in terms of design, but for some people the polished look and smooth feel are worth it.

    • Plastic: Plastic iPad cases are usually designed to be pretty heavy-duty, but it depends on the case. If you choose one that’s made of thin, cheap plastic, it could crack if you drop it. Some of the thicker plastic cases can stand up to a lot of abuse, but that kind of protection often comes at the cost of fashion.

    • Polyurethane: Polyurethane iPad cases are the most popular. These are similar to plastic cases, but polyurethane is more durable and flexible, so the cases don’t break easily. These come in the greatest variety of colors and patterns and are easy to clean.

    You should clean the interior of your iPad case periodically to prevent dirt and debris from building up inside.

    Staff
    BestReviews

    Optional iPad case features

    Here are some other features to consider when choosing an iPad case. Not everyone will be interested in these extras, but think about how you use your iPad most often and choose the one that best accommodates those needs.

    iPad stand: Some cases come with a built-in stand to prop up the iPad. This is especially useful when you’re watching videos. Most folio cases double as a stand, but some of these cases have a tendency to fall over if bumped. Shell cases might also have a built-in stand that looks like a kickstand on a bike.

    Stylus holder: If you often use a stylus with your iPad, you’ll want to look for cases that have a built-in stylus holder. Some cases come with a free stylus, but most require you to purchase this separately.

    Built-in screen protector: Some cases may have a screen protector built in, which can save you the trouble of buying one.

    Carrying handle or strap: If you often travel with your iPad and don’t carry a separate bag, look for one that comes with a carrying handle or strap.

    Keyboard: The iPad’s touch keyboard can get a little cumbersome, so if you do a lot of typing on your iPad, you’ll want to choose a case that comes with a built-in keyboard, especially if you do a lot of web surfing or have long documents to type.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Some iPad cases are designed to automatically put the iPad into sleep mode when the cover is closed.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Cases that come with keyboards usually come with a separate battery pack to power the keyboard.

    iPad case prices

    iPad cases can range in price from around $12 to over $50.

    Basic folio cases come in a large variety of colors and patterns and cost under $20. Heavy-duty plastic shell cases start at around $25.

    One of the biggest factors in determining the cost of an iPad case is the number of extra features included. You’re going to pay more for a case with a built-in keyboard and a stylus than for a simpler case that just protects your iPad against damage. Cases with extras like a keyboard cost about $40 to $50. More common features like an iPad stand are available on a variety of cases and don’t affect the price significantly.

    Affordable, lightweight travel case

    This sleek, portable case has a trifold faux leather cover that easily converts into a stand for your 9.7” iPad. All 13 color choices have strong magnetic covers to help keep your iPad screen protected when it’s not in use.

    Tips

    • If you’re prone to dropping your iPad or you have small children, it’s important to purchase a heavy-duty case that can withstand falls.

    • If you’re choosing a folio case, the inside should be soft so that it doesn’t scratch the iPad’s screen.

    • If you choose a case that has a built-in keyboard, know that it will need to be charged periodically.

    • A good iPad case should have a nonslip surface.

    Some iPad models share the same shape and size, so you might be able to reuse your case if you upgrade to a compatible model.

    FAQ

    Q. Does my iPad need a case?

    A. That’s a matter of personal preference. If you don’t like using a case and you’re careful with your iPad, you might be fine without one. However, if you don’t want to take a chance that your iPad might fall and break, it’s best to purchase a case.

    Q. Will a case obscure the iPad’s camera?

    A. No. If you’re purchasing the right size case for your iPad, there should be a small hole in the back for the camera.

    Q. Can I charge my iPad while the case is on?

    A. This depends on the type of case, but in general, yes. If the case fits very snugly, you might have a little trouble getting the charge cord to plug in. Read customer reviews to get a sense of whether or not this is an issue with the case you’re considering.

    The team that worked on this review
    • Bronwyn
      Bronwyn
      Editor
    • Devangana
      Devangana
      Web Producer
    • Eliza
      Eliza
      Production Manager
    • Jacob
      Jacob
      Editorial Manager
    • Kailey
      Kailey
      Writer
    • Katie
      Katie
      Editorial Director
    • Linsay
      Linsay
      Editor
    • Melinda
      Melinda
      Web Producer
    • Moriah
      Moriah
      Writer

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