The best iPad case
An iPad is a serious investment, but it takes just the slip of a hand or an errant set of keys loose in your bag to do some serious damage to it. An iPad case can help protect your iPad from all kinds of damage, including drops, scuffed screens, and scratched camera lenses.
It's important to choose an iPad case that provides the degree of protection you require. Our top choice is made by ZUGU CASE, which provides exceptional all-around protection from drops and more.
Considerations when choosing iPad cases
Shell cases are rugged cases that fit on the back and sides of your tablet. They provide protection when your tablet is dropped or knocked to the ground. Shell cases often feature screen protectors to prevent cracks and scratches to your screen.
Folio cases are made from leather, or more commonly, faux leather. They have a front cover that flaps over the screen of the iPad much like a book cover. Folio cases look smart and offer protection from scratches, but they don't offer a huge amount of drop protection.
iPad sleeves or carry cases are cases that you simply slip your iPad into when not in use. They aren't great as a sole protection method for your iPad but make a decent compromise for people who don't like using cases but want to give their iPad some degree of protection while carrying it around.
Make sure to choose an iPad case that's compatible with the model of iPad you own. Since iPad cases aren't universal, it's important to check the size to be sure it fits your tablet.
Color or print
You can find iPad cases in a range of colors and sometimes with patterns or prints on them. Choose one to match your iPad, or just choose whichever color or pattern you prefer.
Plenty of iPad cases feature a built-in stand so you can easily position your iPad at a comfortable working or viewing angle without needing to hold it.
Although it's possible to buy stand-alone keyboards, you can also buy iPad cases with integrated keyboards. These are especially useful if you frequently use a keyboard with your iPad.
A stylus holder on an iPad case is a real advantage for anyone who regularly uses a stylus and requires easy access.
iPad case prices
Although you can find iPad cases for less than $10, we recommend spending at least $10 to $20 on a basic model as the durability far exceeds the less expensive options. Expect to pay $20 to $30 for mid-range iPad cases. High-end options can cost as much as $40 to $60.
Q. Can I still use my iPad's camera with it in a case?
A. Assuming you buy a case that's compatible with the iPad model you own, your case should have an opening around the lens so you can use your camera unimpeded (with the exception of iPad covers/carry cases). That said, it can be tricky to use a rear camera with a folio case since you need to hold the front cover out of the way of both the screen and the lens.
Q. Do I still have access to all my iPad's ports with a case on it?
A. Unless you choose a cover or carry case -- rather than a more permanent iPad case -- there are openings around all ports, so you can charge your tablet, plug in headphones, and so on.
iPad cases we recommend
Best of the best: ZUGU CASE Prodigy X Case
Our take: This hugely durable case can protect your iPad from a five foot drop. Pricey but worth the money.
What we like: Functional as well as rugged with seven angle options from the built-in stand, stylus holder, soft microfiber interior, and magnetic back panel so you can stick your iPad on metal objects.
What we dislike: Not compatible with iPad Pro or 2019 iPad Air.
Best bang for your buck: ESR Yippee Tri-fold Smart Case for iPad
Our take: The faux leather finish gives the folio case a classic appearance at an affordable price.
What we like: Protects the front and back of your iPad. Tri-fold design doubles as a stand. Available in 10 color choices.
What we dislike: Doesn't offer much protection from drops.
Choice 3: Supcase iPad Case
Our take: A heavy-duty option that protects your iPad 360° thanks to the built-in screen protector.
What we like: Integrated kickstand. Port covers keep out dirt and debris. Raised edges give additional protection to screen and lenses. Excellent drop protection.
What we dislike: Feels a little bulky.
Lauren Corona is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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