SmartShell vs PixelSkin vs Otter Box
Like I said before, the only downside to the SmartShell was that it only provides protection for the back of your iPad 2. If you’re looking for a case that provides a more comprehensive protection, then maybe our next case is for you.
At first glance, the PixelSkin HD Wrap from Speck looks like an ironed out hot water bottle, and even feels like such. But slide your iPad2 into this baby and it’s going to be as cozy as can be. Having said that, actually getting the PixelSkin on required a fair bit of precarious tugging and coaxing at the corners, and one corner managed to snag and bend my screen protector, which was annoying. But after a few numb fingers, my iPad2 was safely in its new case.
The PixelSkin has a beautiful textured surface making it almost impossible to slip from your grip when closed. The case provides both front and back protection for your iPad 2, and really is a very snug fit. By opening and folding back the front cover, you can prop your iPad 2 up for typing or watching content, and the incline is much higher than what is offered by the standard Smart Cover. I found this increase in incline to be great when watching content, but a minor strain when typing away for long periods of time. What was a bit disappointing about the PixelSkin was that when you open the front cover, your iPad 2 doesn’t automatically turn on, which is a bit of a shame since I’ve gotten so used to that happening when using the Apple Smart Cover. Also in order to prop up the iPad, you need to fold back the front cover and then slide a little tab into a slot in the middle of the case to lock the cover in place. This can get a bit fiddly and will take a bit of practice to get right, as there was one instance where I didn’t slot it in properly and the cover unfolded while I was typing away. The PixelSkin does add a little bit of extra width to your device, but for a fairly robust all-round protection for your iPad2 this is a good enough contender for your attention.
Likes: Easy to grip, full protection.
Dislikes: Not as easy to install and remove, folding front can be cumbersome, doesn’t automatically turn the screen on when opened.