The iPad 2's best case scenario: Smart Cover-friendly cases (updated)

Does a back cover plus Apple's Smart Cover equal the perfect iPad 2 case? We look at some Smart Cover-compatible solutions and put them to the test.

Belkin's Snap Shield: one of my favorite Smart Cover-compatible iPad 2 covers to date.
Belkin's Snap Shield: One of my favorite Smart Cover-compatible iPad 2 covers to date. Sarah Tew/CNET
Updated July 13, 2011, with new Smart Cover-compatible back covers.

When I bought my iPad 2, I noticed immediately that the perfect case for my new iPad might not resemble what I bought for my old one. I was a big fan of Apple's microfiber case for my original iPad. However, like many iPad 2 owners, I bought a Smart Cover. I like its magnetic easy on/off flexibility, but it doesn't play nicely with many iPad 2 cases.

That's starting to change now, thankfully. The Smart Cover offers front protection, but what I was looking for was a good back protector. It seemed to me that a good back cover, plus the Smart Cover, would the best case scenario for the iPad 2 .

Since I last wrote this post, some new solutions have hit the market. Click through to see some of the best Smart Cover-compatible back covers we've seen so far for the iPad 2, along with hands-on impressions of each. As of this update, my favorite is Belkin's Snap Shield, followed closely by Speck's SmartShell (thanks to some readers below for the research recommendations).

Related links
• What's the iPad 2's best case scenario?
• iPad 2 case roundup
• Searching for the perfect iPad bag

Do you prefer a Smart Cover/back cover combo, or do you like a different case solution? Have you found your ideal best case scenario? Sound off below.

About the author

Scott Stein is a senior editor covering iOS and laptop reviews, mobile computing, video games, and tech culture. He has previously written for both mainstream and technology enthusiast publications including Wired,, Men's Journal, and Maxim, and regularly appears on TV and radio talking tech trends.


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