Although there are a multitude of cases and backs out there for the Apple iPad 2, how many of them can you say is truly anti-slip – staying “on the trunk of a Porsche driving 60mph”. Unfortunately I do not own a Porsche so I could not test SofProducts, statement, but I did get a chance to put the case through its paces. Would this high impact case be the right case for you? Check the review of the SofShell right after the break!
TPU, or thermoplastic urethane, cases have seen a huge market presence increase in recent years, with cases designed to protect almost every electronic peripheral. Most TPU cases out there appear to be like soft malleable plastic with a smooth translucent surface. The SofShell differs by having anti-slip coating that keeps your iPad sitting pretty wherever it is set down. The surface coating of the SofShell is reminiscent of silicone cases that provide a great deal of grip and security to your device. This can be a positive and a negative, but in this case, we have to look at the case as a whole.
The case comes packaged in a plastic with a nice bright insert and descriptions on the back of the features of the SofShell. Here, SofProducts boasts the superior grip of the case along with the antimicrobial nature of the product. The case is translucent in color, but not totally clear. There are little speckled circles on the inside of the case that offers texture and a sense of design for the case. Unfortunately, on my iPad, the case didn't totally blend in with the apple product. That is quite unfortunate because the last thing you want to do is cover up the beauty of the Apple iPad. Just glancing at the iPad with the case on it, there is nothing to write home about, so it is really not one of those head turners.
Once on the iPad, the case offers very good protection, as TPU is very shock absorbent. The iPad fits snug in the case, but will not fit on iPads with thick skins or backs. Despite the shortcomings on the look, the Sofshell has some nice openings for the different ports that are not lazy cut outs. The dock connector has the perfect sized opening and there is adequate access to the headphone jack. There are holes punched in the case where the speaker grill of the iPad resides, allowing unobstructed sound to flow through. The sleep/wake button and the volume rocker switches are not open however, but I found the layer of TPU on top of these buttons allow nice satisfying presses just fine. The case is SmartCover compatible as there are cut outs for the magnetic latches. As a side note - this case with my black leather SmartCover...just not so aesthetically pleasing.
What it lacks in beauty, the Sofshell certainly does what it claims. It offers SUPERIOR grip. This case is so grippy that it almost feels sticky. Although I did not get the chance to try out the case on my 'porsche', I have no doubt that an iPad in this grippy case will sit pretty on the dashboard at any speed. The stickiness of the case has been a lint magnet and the texture makes me uncomfortable when I am holding my iPad. I felt the dust, grit and lint that was sticking to the case, and it required some consistent cleaning to get rid of that 'dirty' feeling I had. SofProducts even knows that this is a problem, offering a disclaimer that lint will collect and cleaning the case would be necessary.
All in all - I am not too big a fan of the case. The super grip is not that necessary to me, but I do see it's value for people who require that extra security or of those who plan on using their iPad in moving vehicles. The grip just did not feel good to me, and I liken the texture to sticky rubber laced with dirt and dust after use. For that reason, and for the overall look of the case, I can't fully recommend this to iPad users who want to keep things clean and slick looking. At the hicked up price of $49.50, the SofShell is one of the more expensive plastic cases out there.