iPad Pro replacement musings

I’m considering a new iPad Pro and looking to explore case alternatives with fellow MPU members.

I typically like to get Apple branded cases after discovering the hard way over the years that other brands may have issues - for example a bright green phone case which was too close to the camera flash giving a green tinge to flash photos. However I’m finding the Apple offerings this time don’t really seem to suit my use cases.

Here are some of the things I have done with iPads

  • Facetime and Zoom !
  • put it on a music stand and play with my band
  • stick a case to a window with masking tape, put the iPad in the case and take an overnight timelapse of a snowfall. (iPhone would also work but I couldn’t go that long without using my phone for other things)
  • put it in a drone remote control and fly my drone
  • put it on a tripod and run my astrophotography rig
  • read websites
  • show photo albums
  • light photo editing
  • hand written notes with Apple Pencil
  • vector drawing apps
  • put it in my handbag (UK) purse (US) or Peak Design camera sling

Many of these activities increase the risk of the iPad falling or being dropped. None of them require a keyboard. It was frustrating to have an iPad case that was hard to remove to put into the music stand iPad holder. Having an iPad keyboard cover or plain cover that can be ripped off in a second has been great. The original Apple Pencil battery charging method was particularly annoying although fast enough to turn a flat dead Pencil into a working one in a couple of minutes.

Here are some of the things I don’t do with an iPad

  • email (I use my iPhone)
  • type much (I thought I would write on long flights, tried it once and it doesn’t work for me)
  • read novels (I also use my iPhone)
  • I really don’t like trying to turn it into a MacBook, since I already have an MBP and I still use apps that don’t run on mobile.

So the Apple Magic Keyboard doesn’t look like a good option for me because although I like the magnetic easy on, easy off aspect, it does not protect the edges, is substantially heavy and thick and the cost would be better allocated to more storage or 12.9" vs 11".

As far as I can tell, the other Apple offerings don’t offer a “rip off” cover that separates via magnets.

I have a spare Logitech K811 keyboard, so possibly I could dedicate that to the iPad and go without a keyboard cover again.

Any thoughts would be appreciated. I still haven’t selected between 12.9" and 11" - I’m asking future me whether I regret not getting more storage, getting a device that was too big to run around with all the time, or not getting the biggest available display. Future me hasn’t answered yet. :slight_smile:

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I’ve had and used a Zugu case, zugucase.com and that might work. Not terribly hard to take out and you get full protection on sides and the cover folds back nicely. It’s a tad heavy and slightly awkward at times. But very protective.

For the most recent iPad Pro I opted for the Logitech Combo Touch case/keyboard. You get a fully protective case with a detachable keyboard. Has a very nice kickstand for use without keyboard. Very easy to use hand held. Not too thick or heavy. I think it will last much longer than the material used by Apple which is, in part, why I chose it.

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I saw the Logitech, and it does look like a good option. Just one thing against it - and the “pro” cases in general - All those shades of gray. Just because I’m buying a “pro” device doesn’t mean I’m taking it into boardrooms.

Zugu - looks great actually! I had not found this one. I just added Facetime and Zoom to my original post. Getting something that holds the right angle when you’re on the sofa is another issue, I typically use a tripod.

I think you’ll struggle to find “easy to remove” AND edge protection.

Apple does offer a folio case which attaches and removes magnetically Buy iPad Pro 11-inch Smart Folio - Apple (UK) but you may find the edge protection lacking.

you’ll also find similar yet far cheaper cases on Amazon.

The beauty of the naked robotic core (TM John Siracusa) is you can add what you need when you need it.

But maybe AppleCare would give you the peace of mind to go without rubberised corners. :wink:

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@Diane, this is brilliant!

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If you would like to try a folio cover like one mentioned by @geoffaire I recommend the MoKo Magnetic Smart Folio Case.

It is virtually identical to Apple’s Smart Folio in function and superior, IMO, in quality. I purchased one to replace my $80 Apple Smart Folio that started coming apart at the edges after a few months. $17 from Amazon (Black only)

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B083TC1125/

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checkout SwitchEasy CoverBuddy or CoverBuddy Folio.

The CoverBuddy also works with Apple’s smart cover. I use it with the Magic keyboard on my 2018 iPad Pro model.

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Interesting - adds edge protection and stops the pencil from getting lost. Might be good to add for travel and other fall-risk situations. I’m in awe that somebody made a product designed to fit between an iPad and its Apple-designed case.

Thanks for the tip. But exploring from there I found this Amazon.com: Fintie SlimShell Case for iPad Pro 11-inch (3rd Generation) 2021 - Soft Flexible TPU Stand Back Cover with Pencil Holder, Also Fit iPad Pro 11" 2nd Gen 2020 / 1st Gen 2018, Composition Book

I’m waiting for the day when somebody makes covers for paper notebooks that makes them look like Apple devices.

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The orange is beyond compare, I keep circling back to it. However, as you say, I could add something else when edge protection is necessary.

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It sounds like a good idea, but I tried it last night and it didn’t work at all: absolutely no snow fell and still just hot weather with lots of smoke :wink:

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After all your help, I decided not to get a new case. Or a new iPad.

I was about to replace a 9.7" iPad Pro that refused to charge during and after a trip to Europe - it would just show the “please insert a cable” graphic when I connected it to power; I had repeatedly tried various cables all of which worked with other devices, and also tried blowing air into the lightning port. Before going out to pick up the new iPad I gave it one last try with an Apple cable, that I’m pretty sure I tried before. I saw the red empty battery graphic but this time with no “please insert a cable.” After 15 minutes there was an Apple logo, and now after a couple of hours it’s over 60% charged. So, I don’t know what went wrong but at least it’s working again.

Lol. It’s crazy how far the smoke goes - https://fire.airnow.gov

@Diane Be very careful. Vacuum cleaners can generate a lot of static electricity, so if you’re not somewhere which has earthed power sockets, then you may want to avoid this or it may fry your ipad.

Although I’ve done this numerous times, you’re correct that using a vacuum cleaner without taking appropriate precautions isn’t the best idea. Rather than detail those precautions, which most people wouldn’t perform anyway, I’ve removed my post. Thanks for pointing this out.

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No problem, and I’m sure that 99 times out of 100 it wouldn’t be a problem, but that one time…

Noted but I suspect it was to do with a non Apple cable, non US power or even cabin air pressure.