As always my good friends at Otterbox Cork have sent me on another one of their fine cases to review. This time is one of my old friends the Otterbox Defender for the iPad. This version has been designed for the latest carnation of the iPad and that is the iPad Air. While the new case isn’t identical to the previous models i have reviewed . The iPad Air version drops the diamond-styled side ribbing in favor of a fancier central rear texture that could pass for leather at a distance, otherwise functionally the same. The box includes four pieces: a two-piece hard plastic iPad frame with an integrated clear plastic screen protector, a rubber case that fits around the plastic frame on all sides, and a slightly X-shaped fold-up stand that attaches to the encased iPad’s front or back for travel. If you carry the tray-like stand around, you add quite a bit of weight and thickness to the iPad Air, but add the ability to place your iPad on well-supported typing and nearly 45-degree video viewing angles. Disappointed to find No magnets are found in the stands for automatic screen unlocking, a feature that was included in the earlier iPad Defender case i have tested OtterBox covers most of the iPad Air with one or two layers of material, the Defender both leave the two cameras, twin microphones, and twin speakers completely exposed, albeit recessed millimetres under the case’s front, rear and bottom surfaces. As a result, the cases are effectively safe enough that your iPad Air won’t get water-logged if held the right way during an accidental splash, and plenty of material is there to absorb accidental drops, but forget going into the bath or going on the beach with this case and your iPad as water and sand will find a way in. Overall my experience with each Defender case is by and large very positive. What you trade off in device lightness and thinness is made up for by the added protection, which is reassuringly sturdy at all points across the iPad’s body. Flip-open headphone port, side switch, and Lightning port covers feel solid in either position, and provide enough access for fingers and cables to fit. Screen protection is only very mildly prismatic, with fine touchscreen responsiveness, and button coverage is quite responsive, even if you’ll need a little extra pressure to register presses. OtterBox will offer the case in 4 different colours.
- Solid quality finish (improvement again on last version)
- Excellent if you have kids you need to entertain but you want your iPad back in one piece.
- Confidence that if you dropped your iPad you would have a very good chance that it will come out ok
- Variety of different colours to choose from (really like the colour “Crevasse” of the unit i was giving to review)
- Less bulk than the original Defender Series
- Built in Screen Protector like on the Defender Series on the iPhone
- I found the stand excellent to use.
- Clear view of the Apple Logo at the back
- There are soft flaps over the 3.5 mm headphone jack on the top and the 30-pin port on the bottom
- Does ad a decent amount of weight.Came from using Apple’s smart case so was a big jump in weight to get use to again.
- No magnets are found in the stands for automatic screen unlocking, a feature that was included in the earlier iPad Defender case i have tested.
- Price €89.95 ( that said if you pay close to €500 for the iPad whats an extra €90 to save to from a guaranteed fall without the case )
Look this case is for a particular type of iPad user.Its not going to win any awards at the sexy iPad Cases Awards but what Otterbox have done is moved away from the rugged builder type look with the new Defender for the new iPad .Yes this case is still a beast of a case and adds bulk etc to your design flawless iPad but it’s actually NOT ugly. I have to say i loved using this case, having used the Defender on the iPad 1 i kinda knew what to expect but with the refinements Otterbox have made to this case it’s moved into a new category of case and no longer just for the building site. I have to say the stand out feature for me has to be the new stand design but why they left out the magnets this time is beyond me, It’s just so solid an delivers in every way.
Click here to learn more about Defender Series case for iPad Air. Defender Series For iPad Air Overall Scores: Aesthetic Appeal: Fit For Purpose: Build Quality: Value: