Folio cases have grown to be a trendy accessory for the iPad 2 with many companies taking advantage of the iPad 2's magnetic functionalities. Many, if not all of these folio cases also incorporate similar Smart Cover stand functionalities into their design. The Sense by Mivizu packs all of these very wanted features into an executive looking folio case for the iPad 2 that comes in 4 different colors. The Sense is made out of leather and offers complete protection against scratches and nasty dents for the iPad 2 unlike Apple's expensive Smart Cover offering. Is the Mivizu Sense case enough to fulfil all your leather and protection needs? Find out right after the break!
Like most folio cases for the iPad 2, the Mivizu Sense has the traditional look and feel of a folio case. The insides are lined with a gray, soft microfiber material while the closure flap tucks underneath the iPad 2 in order to form a secure hold inside the Sense. The iPad 2's bezel is mostly surrounded by the Sense's frame leaving the home button, proximity sensor and front-facing camera visible.
Around the back side of the Mivizu Sense is where things turn out to be quite different from the current iPad 2 folio offerings. The Sense has an extra layer of protection sewn to its back side which is lightly padded and offers a good amount of back protection that compensates for the already tough and hard front cover that's protecting the iPad 2's front screen. Corners are not as padded as most of the back side area of the iPad 2, but the tough overlay surrounding the iPad 2 creates a rigid frame that will help keep the corners protected should you accidentally drop your iPad 2 to the ground.
Cutouts are all nicely cut and wide enough to let you easily reach buttons and ports. You can even use most 3rd party cables and accessories thanks to the cutouts the tight-fitting edges. There are a number of large perforations made above the iPad 2's back speaker which seems to work well and not block the sound.
The Mivizu Sense's front cover folds up into a triangle and enables you to use your iPad 2 in a typing mode. The magnets don't seems to be strong enough to keep the triangle secured in place like the Smart Cover leaving friction to do all the work instead. Well that actually seems to work well to keep the triangle shape of the folder cover in place when its in the typing mode. Even though the magnets don't hold the folded front cover in its triangle shape, the typing angle seems to stay sturdy and at a perfect angle. Relying on friction does work, however once you move your iPad 2 around the triangle shape will unfold right away.
You can also position your iPad 2 in the landscape viewing angle with the Sense. The landscape viewing angle is also held in place thanks to friction, but unlike the more sturdy typing angle, there is a little movement when touching the iPad 2's touch screen. The triangle stand of the Sense seems to keep the iPad 2 well in its landscape angle without the magnets working together. It isn't very reliable though. All Mivizu has to do is put a few stronger magnets to make sure the triangle fold holds its form no matter what. Compared to Apple's Smart Cover, the Sense doesn't perform all that well in the landscape viewing stand.
The Sense does a good job keeping its front cover shut and secured using the built-in magnets that will also wake and put your iPad 2 to sleep. Should you want to fold back the front cover of the Sense, it will not accidentally put your iPad 2 back to sleep.
Overall, the $59.95 price tag (actually $29 over at Amazon) isn't too bad for an all-leather folio case, although I would have liked to see Mivizu improve the stand functionality of the Sense and better implement the magnets. I like the overall feeling of the leather and form factor the Sense has. While I think it does a great job protecting the iPad 2 all around, it's far from being a perfect folio case for the iPad 2. Solid build quality and leather is most attractive at this price point. I do think the Sense has the right executive look and feel, and while it may not be a Vaja, I think you will find the competitive price point and protection to be an attractive deciding point considering all the downsides.