Review – Otterbox Defender Series iPad Case

On September 7, 2010, in Cases, Dock, iPad, Review, by Mike Breed

Otterbox Defender Case for the iPad
Company: Otterbox
Price: $89.95


When I found out about Otterbox’s new Defender Series case for the iPad, I jumped at the opportunity to review it. I’ve reviewed other cases for Otterbox in the past, so I’m already familiar with their attention to detail and quality workmanship that is put into their cases. I couldn’t wait to see what they had for the iPad. I wasn’t disappointed.

I couldn’t help but smile when I opened the Defender case. The packaging was of Apple-caliber, with the placement of everything well thought out. The Defender case for the iPad comes with three layers of protection. The hard plastic inner layer provides rigid durability. This is surrounded by a softer silicone cover that cushions minor impacts and provides scratch resistance. A protective screen film helps to prevent marring of your iPad’s screen, while a hard plastic shell that can be snapped onto either the front or back of the iPad serves a dual purpose as a stand. It’s the ultimate package for your iPad.

As is the case with other Defender series cases from Otterbox, getting the case onto your device takes a bit of work. Fortunately, Otterbox provides illustrated instructions for getting the case on and off without much difficulty. It does take some effort to get the silicone tabs to line up with the slots of the inner shell, but with some coaxing, they go in with an amazing fit. The result is well worth the effort. Your iPad looks stylish in a matte black finish that gives the impression that it’s part of Apple’s design for the iPad.


While the inner hard plastic case isn’t really visible except for around the edge of the iPad’s screen, the soft silicone outer covering looks great. With the exception of the top mic, the outer cover protects every control and port with soft silicone flaps that fit perfectly. The controls are still easy to use, so doing things like adjusting the volume or putting your iPad on standby won’t be an issue.

Otterbox must have heard my rumblings about other Defender series cases, for they incorporated a plate that slides off the bottom of the case, exposing the dock connector port with plenty of room to fit your iPad on any docking station. When in place, this silicone-covered piece of hard plastic completely covers the port, keeping out debris. It slides on and off easily, making charging at night a breeze.

If you’ve ever tried to place a screen protector onto an iPhone or iPod Touch, you know how tricky it is to get one on aligned properly without bubbles or dust particles. This is exacerbated with the large screen of the iPad. The protective film Otterbox provides is fingerprint resistant and does a great job of protecting your iPad’s screen without losing any touch sensitivity.

I really wish Otterbox would provide two films with the case. The first film can be tough to get on properly, and it usually picks up any stray dust particles that you may have missed on your initial cleaning. The second film would go on dust-free if it were provided. Otterbox provides a heavy duty card to push out bubbles. They also provide a lint-free chamois with their logo printed on it to keep the screen clean. The chamois fits the iPad’s screen perfectly, showing real attention to detail. Even with all this, I still managed to get a single piece of dust, and thus a small bubble, right at the top edge of my iPad’s screen. I needed that second film, but couldn’t find where to order one on Otterbox’s website.

The extra shell that is provided can be snapped onto the front of the iPad, covering its screen completely. It can also be snapped onto the back for storage while using your iPad. The cover snaps into place with a plastic tab on each of the iPad’s corners, holding it in place securely. The cover makes your iPad look and feel like a small laptop.

Here’s the cool part: the cover doubles as a stand! By popping up a scissor-like platform that’s built into the inside of the cover, you can prop up your iPad in either portrait or landscape position. Everything fits perfectly in either orientation, and the angle is just right for typing or working on your iPad. I’ve found that the stand is great for reading! I sit my iPad on the stand, which I then place on the arm of my Mission-style chair in my man-cave. This places my iPad at the perfect angle to read without even holding onto the iPad. Yes, I’m that lazy, and yes, reading this way is that cool.

In my opinion, Otterbox’s Defender case for the iPad is the best case on the market. It provides amazing protection with stylish looks that wear like iron. This kind of protection and style doesn’t come cheaply. At $89.95, the Defender is also one of the most expensive cases you can buy for your iPad.

I’m completely awestruck with the Defender case for the iPad.. Kudos to Otterbox, for they are definitely on top of their game right now. If you want the best for your iPad, go and grab yourself a Defender case from Otterbox today.

MyMac.com Review Rating: 9 out of 10 (Heavily skewed toward a perfect 10)

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2 Responses to Review – Otterbox Defender Series iPad Case

  1. Mike Breed says:

    UPDATE – After reading my review, Otterbox kindly sent me a replacement screen cover. It went onto my iPad flawlessly, with no dust or bubbles to be found anywhere. THAT’S what I call customer service! Thank you, Otterbox!

  2. Demetrius says:

    Great review

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