Apple updates Smart Case, Smart Cover for iPad Air
The new narrow and thin dimensions of the Apple iPad Air have necessitated the creation of a new range of matching Apple covers. The updated Smart Cover ($39) and the new Smart Case ($79) have been tailor made by Apple in multiple color options to match its next-generation tablet. The Smart Cover and the Smart Case are each multifunctional, offering both protection and the ability to be used in two different positions, while also automatically putting your device to sleep or waking it. So which one do you choose?
Claims previous covers, Smart Covers won't fit new full-size tablet
Citing sources from among Apple's Chinese and Taiwanese suppliers, analyst Brian J. White of Cantor Fitzgerald says that if the rumors and parts leaks for the next full-size iPad are accurate -- a thinner design that mimics the iPad mini in style -- then the company will additionally introduce new iPad Smart Covers for the forthcoming product. While the conclusion may seem a bit obvious to fans of the tablets, White's investor clients don't often factor in ancillary sales such as covers into their AAPL profit forecasts.
Covers fit new, narrower design
A new video shows what are allegedly redesigned Smart Covers for the fifth-generation iPad. To demonstrate this, two of the covers, obtained by Unbox Therapy, are attached to a leaked chassis for the fifth-gen tablet. The covers fit exactly, even though the chassis is narrower than the current fourth-gen iPad. Gray, black, red, pink, orange, blue, white, and green colors are reportedly in production.
Core designs of iPhone 4, iPad 2 secured
Apple has won the rights to several important design patents from the US Patent and Trademark Office. These include the look of the iPhone 4, which is credited in part to lead designer Jonathan Ive, as well as the company's co-founder, Steve Jobs. Ive is also cited in all the other new patents, such as one for the iPhone 4 "Bumper" case.
Mini Smart Covers already being delivered
Apple is beginning to ship early online orders of the iPad mini, notes MacRumors. Although the company's official tracking page is showing orders as "Preparing for Shipment," FedEx data indicates that many tablets are already en route. People who ordered Smart Covers for their Minis are in fact starting to receive the accessories.
Smart Covers will cost $39, be offered in six colors
The just-revealed iPad mini will launch alongside official Smart Covers from Apple. There will be six available, with a black, grey, pink, green, blue, and a (Product) RED version. Unlike the Smart Covers for the full-sized iPads, there won't be a metal hinge in the mini covers, and it's one-sided.
'Peek' concept would allow partial use of iPad screen
Apple was won a patent on the magnet technology in the Smart Cover for the iPad, and a so-far unused "peek mode" concept, says AppleInsider. The patent describes a magnetic assembly designed to ensure that the accessory can be easily aligned and attached to a tablet that has its own built-in magnets. More critical to the patent are tablet sensors used to detect the presence of a magnetic field, which in the case of the iPad shut the device on and off when the Smart Cover is lifted or closed.
Future Apple Smart Cover could include embedded display
An Apple patent application first filed in August last year has revealed a design for a Smart Cover with a flexible secondary display. According to the patent filing with the USPTO, Apple says that flexible display technology can be integrated into the flexible cover without changing the overall form factor of the device. Adding the flexible display into the cover "greatly enhances the overall functionality of the tablet device."
Fate of iPad mini less certain
An iLounge source is backing claims that a new iPhone will be launched around mid-September. The person is somewhat vaguer, only hinting at a date around the third week, but that would be consistent with a rumored September 21st target. The source adds that Apple is working on two or more cases for the device: this includes one similar to the current Bumper case, expected to ship at the same time as the new phone, and another which could supposedly have a major impact on the accessory industry.
May face uphill fight after Apple patent win
A Colorado resident, Jerald Bovino, has filed a new lawsuit against Apple, claiming that the company's Smart Cover infringes a 2005 patent. Bovino owns patent 6,977,809, which describes a "Portable Computer Case." One similarity between the patent concept and the Smart Cover is a series of visible "rib" lines.
Range extends from Smart Covers to iTunes rentals
Apple has won the rights to 25 new US patents, covering numerous different products, Patently Apple observes. Some of these include a second patent on the iTunes Store and its rental system, and a fifth patent on Time Machine, featuring an interface capable of showing earlier versions of files. The former dates back to 2008, while the latter was originally submitted in 2007.
New iPad requires a particular polarity
Earlier this week, MacNN noted that despite similar specifications, some iPad 2 accessories don't quite work with the third-generation iPad. Form-fitting accessories such as hard-plastic shells, for example, may not fit the iPad's slightly thicker depth. Reports of inconsistencies with both Apple branded Smart Covers and third-party covers that offered the same functionality has been clarified by an enterprising user, reports Mashable.
iPad 3 may have repositioned camera
Another proclaimed leak of an iPad 3 casing has given some possible clearer indicators of how the design might change. Unlike the previous tip, Apple.pro's view shows the back and more conspicuously shows the moved rear camera. The outside also suggests a conservative design with virtually the same tapered aluminum as the iPad 2.
Size could be necessary for new tech
The iPad 3 will be thicker, claim "Asian intelligence sources" cited by Macotakara. The change will allegedly render cases fitting the back of an iPad 2 useless. The front of the 3 is expected to remain largely the same though according to a parts supplier, to the extent that Smart Covers made for the iPad 2 will still function.
Asus demos Smart Cover/Origami-like sleeve
ASUS has lifted the lid on a video demo of its Transformer Prime Sleeve. The sleeve looks and functions similarly to the iPad 2 Smart Cover. It is also reminiscent of the InCase Origami iPad case that folds in a way that allows that props the device up for easy typing. Asus has given a video demo (embedded below) of the cover in action using its Facebook page.
Expected to push existing (PRODUCT) RED gear
Apple Stores will mark a very low-key observance of World AIDS Day on December 1st, claim sources for ifoAppleStore. The plan involves simply promoting goods that fall under (PRODUCT) RED, which donates a small portion of proceeds to the Global Fund to fight AIDS in Africa. Some Apple Specialists, for instance, will be wearing and marketing the RED iPod nano.
Macs, iPads, iPods see discounts
A leaked pamphlet shows the some of discounts Apple is planning to offer for this year's Black Friday sale, according to 9to5Mac. In terms of computers, the company is taking $101 off the iMac, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro. iPad 2 discounts range from $41 to $61, depending on storage capacity, and a similar philosophy applies to the iPod touch, which is getting between $21 and $41 off. Both the 8 and 16GB iPod nanos are $11 chepaer.
Also copes with DNS, certificate, kernel issues
The iOS 5.0.1 update deals with several security flaws in addition to making feature improvements, an Apple note indicates. Among these is a Smart Cover exploit that allowed people to skip passcodes and gain limited access to an iPad 2. Also fixed are vulnerabilities in components like fonts, DNS and URL handling, and weak certificates associated with DigiCert Malaysia, which are no longer trusted.
Leather, polyurethane options change
(Updated with other changes) Apple has made some slight changes to the Smart Cover lineup for the iPad 2, a check of the company's online store indicates. Gone is the orange polyurethane option; in its place, a new dark gray model has been added. The leather cases, meanwhile, are now described as having a "soft, color-matched" microfiber lining instead of just a soft one.
Both designed to work with Apple's Smart Cover
Building on the success of its original Snap Shield back cover for the iPad 2, Belkin today added two new cases to its Snap Shield lineup, both of which -- like the original -- are designed to complement Apple's own Smart Cover. The Snap Shield Secure is a thin, translucent backing that simply snaps on, while the Emerge 024 offers lightweight protection with color options.
Samsung puts Anymode Smart Case at armsí length
Samsung has taken the unusual step of issuing a statement in response to the launch of a third-party iPad Smart Cover rip-off made specifically for its Galaxy Tab 10.1. Samsung has denied any involvement with Anymode stating that the company used its branding without its permission, and in the process trying to ensure that it distances itself from the blatant imitation of what is a patented Apple design.
Scosche launches waterproof, flexible keyboard
SwitchEasy has launched a new iPad 2 case, the CoverBuddy, for use with Apple's Smart Cover. The CoverBuddy offers protection for the iPad's rear casing, which the Smart Cover lacks. It is made of shock-proof polycarbonate and comes with rubber-coated colors or a clear finish with a UV-coating. It provides access to all ports in use, including the rear speaker grill. It ships in ultraclear, black, grey, blue and pink and costs $25.
iPad 2 Smart Cover knockoff serves as warning
A discovery late Thursday of a cheap copy of the iPad 2's Smart Cover has served as a possible warning for those shopping for clones. The unnamed Chinese make was found to be much more cheaply made than the official design and virtually ineffective at its job. Although MIC Gadget's example could wake and sleep the iPad, the shoddy construction was such that the hinge completely detached from the cover and would likely have led to a broken iPad if the owner wasn't holding the iPad underneath.
iPad 2 Smart Cover torn down by iFixit
A unique teardown by iFixit of the iPad 2's Smart Cover and its match-up in the iPad has revealed a more elaborate system than many first thought. The two use a total of 31 magnets, 21 in the cover and 10 in the iPad itself, and are in a more complex layout than some might initially suspect. Only one round magnet in the cover, and a corresponding sensor, turns the display on or off; the rest are used to keep the iPad in place and help keep the cover folded up when used as a stand.