Case maker Maroo is offering multiple variations of its Leather Series Protective Cover, for both the full-sized iPad ($45-$100) and the iPad mini ($50). Each of the three variations on the mini cases is the same price, while the full-sized iPad variations include $45, $50, $70, and $100 models. Other than differences in size, coloration, and the pattern on the outside of each folio, the cases are pretty much identical to one another.
As the name suggests, the cases are made of real, puffy leather. The $50 iPad mini version features a subtle raised wave pattern, in black, red, or purple, while the full-sized case has a flat-textured $45 version, a $50 raised wave version, a $70 three-toned gray swirl version, and a $100 black and yellow premium model with three embossed dragons on it. Each case is lined with soft fabric, and includes pockets and a handstrap inside the lid. They both have iSight camera holes, and tabs on the back for holding the lids and converting into stands. To keep the cases shut, elastic bands wrap around the right corners of the case. Magnets wake and sleep the iPads.
Instead of a full device holder, Leather Series Protective Cover keeps your tablet in place with an X-shaped plastic frame that wraps around the iPad’s corners, but leaves the rest of the edges bare. While the company claims this design helps protect against bumps, we’d definitely prefer more body coverage. The design allows all the ports and buttons to be exposed, although on the full-sized case, the Sleep/Wake button is partially obscured.
Neither case is an optimal solution, based mainly on the incomplete frame. We strongly believe that it’s best to cover as much of an iPad as possible, without getting in the way of how one interacts with it—to leave exposed metal opens up the possibility of damage, which is why most of the folios we’ve reviewed have more protective iPad holders built in. However, the iPad mini Leather Series Protective Cover does look pretty nice from the outside, and given its $50 price is worthy of our limited recommendation. On the other hand, the $100 Drogo is far too expensive for what you’re getting—even if you really like dragons, there’s certainly not $100 worth of value there, earning it a C+. Although we didn’t receive the less expensive versions of the full-sized iPad case for review, the $45 and $50 versions appear to represent a better value than Drogo, assuming that they’re otherwise the same in materials and quality as the iPad mini case.
Leather Series Protective Cover for iPad mini
Leather Series Protective Cover Drogo for iPad
Company and Price
Compatible: iPad 2, iPad (3rd/4th-Gen) + iPad mini