In a variation of Sally Field’s oft-quoted speech (when accepting the Oscar for “Places in the Heart”), I want to say “I like you, I really like you”, with no “buts” to this all-in-one (backshell and magnetized cover) case for the “new” iPad (aka the 3rd generation iPad).
In the above video (visit Vimeo.com for the HD version), I show the unpacking (I like “unpackaging”), installation and setup of the Fabric Flipper with my iPad.
The fabric feel (nothing seems to clarify or identify this micro-fibery material; the most I can glean from Skech’s site is “stylish”) is nice. The iPad installs easily and, from my week plus use of the case, quite secure in the Fabric Flipper. There was a strong chemical smell that had me banishing the unit, sans the iPad, to the living room overnight after I received and unpacked the review unit.
The magnets are so much more strong and secure than with Apple’s own Smart Covers. The positioning of the cover flap was similar, if not identical to what you do with Apple’s covers. With those, I often found my setup – whether in typing or lean position – collapsing as the magnets gave way. Not gonna happen with the Fabric Flipper: the magnets are surprising secure. If you want the video when I was testing the closure, you’ll note that I had to completely flatten the unit to get the auto-sleep to engage: The magnets grabbed the iPad so well that there was a bump that gravity by itself didn’t remove.
Upon closer inspection of the construction of the Fabric Flipper, one may sense that the finesse is not quite there. The edges are a bit rough and this seam between one of the top edges and the back camera hole didn’t make me feel better about this particular point. I want to believe that the case will stand up to typical use and abuse by this traveling tech user.
Skech’s Fabric Flipper is one of the more interesting shell/cover combinations to consider when accessorizing as well as protecting your new/3rd generation iPad. I have heard that it will be selling for around $45US. This makes the Fabric Flipper an economical buy as just a non-leather Smart Cover from Apple retails for $39.95 and offers no back protection to your iPad without supplementing with an additional backshell or cover.
Here are the advertised features of Skech’s Fabric Flipper (also in Blue and Slate, I think):
- Thin design
- Magnetic wake/sleep flap
- Dual position stand
- Full access to ports & controls
- Full body protection
I agree with the “thin design” feature based on my trying the Fabric Flipper-clad iPad in the Zagg SOLO keyboard. In at least the landscape position, I am able to keep the iPad in place while draping the cover portion over the non-key portion of the keyboard. It seems somewhat unstable but it didn’t slip or fall during the 20 or so minutes I tried it out.
Because entire bottom edge and the entire top edge are exposed, plug-in accessories, like the Camera Connector, Docking/charging cords and the Apple Digital AV adapter should work.
I will revisit this review: I plan to use this case frequently and to write an update around the beginning of June. With a full seven weeks of primary use, I want to see how it holds up.
In summary: the Fabric Flipper -with one week’s use – does what is intended and advertised to do. It is a backshell-plus-magnetic-cover that is compatible with the new iPad’s wake/sleep feature. It is lightweight, despite having some strong magnets in the flap portion of the case. My primary concern is on the finishing and how it will hold up with daily use. My grade: 8.5 out of 10.
I do really like this product. Hopefully long-term that will remain the case…