The Week in iPad Cases: Fall forward

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As September makes its way onto our calendars, it brings a new academic year, falling leaves (at least for some of us here in the northern hemisphere), and that feeling that, while summer may be over, holidays are just around the corner. Yet the flow of cases for the iPad continues unabated. Here's the latest in our weekly roundup of iPad protection.

Acme Made's Orikata

Acme Made: The Orikata (iPad 2; $50) is a folio case inspired by the Japanese art of Origami. Its unique folding elements allow you to use the case as a stand for landscape-orientation viewing or typing. It comes in black and it's made of leather-like TPU. As an added bonus, the Orikata is designed to let you place your iPad in Apple's iPad Dock without having to remove the case.

Bracketron's Back-It

Bracketron: The Back-It (iPad 2; $30) is a low-profile case for the back of your iPad that's designed to be compatible with Apple's Smart Cover—both in the sense that it matches the latter's colors and by having a special slot cut out on its side to accommodate the Smart Cover's magnetic attachment. The Back-It is made of precision-cut polycarbonate with a special soft-touch finish for maximum grip, and is available in grey, blue, pink, green, or orange.

IdeaCase's iSmart

IdeaCase: The iSmart Case (iPad 2; $29) is a slim portfolio with a stylish, soft, microfiber lining that keeps your iPad's screen clean. The front of the case folds back, like Apple's Smart Cover, and allows you to prop up your iPad for viewing or typing. And, like a Smart Cover, the iSmart uses magnets to engage the iPad's magnetic sleep/wake feature. The case is available in grey, black, or red.

The i-Model (iPad 2; $19) is a sleeve shaped like a fashionable handbag, with a stylish, black-and-white pattern printed on its exterior and a soft interior lining that protects your tablet from scratches and bumps.

Skech's Booklet

Skech: The Booklet (iPad 2; price unavailable) is a unique folio case that keeps your tablet safe with a protective layer of quilted padding. A zipper keeps everything together, while the soft, felt interior guards against scratches and dents. The case also features a magnetic closure compatible with the iPad 2's sleep/wakeup feature, as well as built-in slots for credit or ID cards. The front cover can fold back to prop up your iPad for landscape-orientation viewing.

SwitchEasy's Thins

SwitchEasy: The Thins (iPad and iPad 2; $40) is, as its name implies, an ultra-thin sleeve for your tablet. Made of durable-but-soft neoprene material, the case is only 4mm thick but roomy enough to accomodate an iPad with a Smart Cover. The heat-sealed construction eliminates the need for stitching, and the sleeve's Velcro closure keeps your iPad safe during transport. The Thins is available in black, blue, red, or purple and ships with two fold-out stands.

USBFever's 8x Telescope with Hard Case

USBFever: Upon hearing of USBFever's new 8X Telescope with Hard Case (iPad 2; $40), I must admit that my first thought was, “This cannot possibly be what it sounds like.” It turns out, however, that it's exactly what it sounds like: a rigid case that comes with a built-in telescope! The latter provides 8x zooming and is compatible with a wide range of external lenses and lens multipliers. The case even comes with a stand for taking pictures and movies without adding unwanted shake.

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