One of Incipio’s first iPad Air cases is a mostly new product — not just a rehash, it’s actually two cases in one. Watson Wallet Folio ($50) combines a faux leather folio with a plastic Feather shell. The latter can snap in and out of the former as needed, which is a pretty cool feature, first seen with versions of Watson for iPhone 5/5s and 5c. Inside the folio, there are three credit card slots, and it can also be used in a standing position. Watson Wallet Folio comes in five colors.
Despite its multilayer design, Watson isn’t terribly thick. At first glance, it looks a lot like any standard folio-style case, and the iPad Air easily snaps in and out of the plastic shell. It’s a lot like early iPad shells for the second-, third-, and fourth-gen tablets, leaving the buttons exposed, along with portions of the top and bottom edges. Instead of only cutting in to expose the ports and controls as necessary, it follows the contours, leaving metal exposed. Auto-locking magnets are missing, although there is an elastic band to hold it shut. Leaning the edge of the shell along the inside cover of the case creates a viewing angle, but there’s no typing position.
If you want to slim down, the shell snaps out of the back of the case. Unlike the iPhone 5/5s version, though, the shell is firmly locked in and won’t come out unless you want it to. On its own, the shell is a fine rather than exciting option. It’s not Smart Cover-compatible, which isn’t a shock given that Watson has its own lid.
At its core, Watson is a pretty cool concept, but we weren’t totally wowed by its execution. The shell could stand to be tailored better, and the addition of a keyboard angle would also be a benefit. But, for someone looking for an all-in-one swappable solution, it has enough appeal to warrant a general recommendation. Watson fills a use case that relatively few other cases attempt to address.
Company and Price
Model: Watson Wallet Folio
Compatible: iPad Air