If you’ve seen Griffin’s CinemaSeat or CinemaSeat 2, then Scosche’s backStage p2 for iPad 2 ($40) will also be pretty familiar to you. Like the CinemaSeats, backStage p2 is a dedicated car mounting solution for Apple’s tablet, made of a soft case that’s designed to wrap around the metal bars of a car seat’s headrest. While we weren’t big fans of Griffin’s model, Scosche actually delivered an even less desirable product, improving on the prior design in only one way: by including screen protector film.
The overall concept and shape are the same, but backStage is different from CinemaSeat 2 in some distinct ways. It’s composed of a simple frame and a flat back, both of which are made of an unusual diamond/pill-textured PVC. A velvety inner lining keeps the tablet from getting scratched. Rather than having three closed edges with specific holes for the I/O and a long opening along the fourth side, three of the sides are held partially together with ragged-looking strips of fabric, and the last with a Velcro strap that attaches to the back.
All four corners are exposed, as is most of the iPad 2’s right side. This allows for easy access to the ports and buttons, but doesn’t look great. On our review unit, the frame around the tablet’s bezel didn’t lay flat. Rather, it was wavy and distorted. On the back is a Velcro-laden strap to wrap around a headrest, and a pocket for small accessories. Overall, we were pretty disappointed by the generally low class appearance of the holder.
Although we didn’t think it was particularly well-designed, we would sooner select CinemaSeat 2 over backStage, as the build quality of Griffin’s product is much better than that of Scosche’s. While they both do the same job pretty much the same way, backStage’s shoddy-looking body isn’t worth the same dollars as the cleaner, nicer CinemaSeat. It arrived looking like a used factory reject, and we’d only consider it if it was sold at a really deep discount.
Company and Price
Model: backSTAGE p2
Compatible: iPad 2