iPad 2 Case Review: Kensington BlackBelt Protection Band for iPad 2 Reviewed by Tong Zhang
Editor's Ratings (1-5): 4
What's Hot: Strong material and sturdy build, cutouts for all buttons and ports, great protection.
What's Not: Adds thickness and weight to the iPad 2.
If the iPhone 4 can have a bumper case, why can't the iPad 2? Instead of improving the reception for the iPhone 4, a bumper case for the iPad 2 can help protect the tablet and provide a better grip for the slim and slippery iPad 2. The folks Kensington think you can! They designed a bumper case like band, imposingly named BlackBelt Protection Band for iPad 2, to protect the edges of the tablet and give you a secure grip for handling the iPad 2. The Kensington BlackBelt Protection Band is simple, yet very effective at achieving that it set out to do.
Made with thick treated rubber, the Kensington BlackBelt Protection Band is strong and sturdy. It wraps around the entire edges of the iPad 2, and covers half of an inch on the front and an inch on the back. When you put the band on your iPad 2, you immediately feel comfortable holding the tablet by the BlackBelt. The band is made with thick rubber that feels smooth yet grippy in hand. The case is lot thicker than some silicone cases, and it should hold its shape much long. It?s easy to put the case on but it takes a bit of maneuvering to take it off without worrying about hurting the iPad 2.
The thick band also changed the look of the iPad 2 from a svelte form to a reinforced hefty look. The Kensington BlackBelt Protection Band measures 2 x 8.5 x 11 inches and weighs 7.8 oz. What does the extra bulk and weight get you? Some serious structural protection that can withstand a good amount of shock and protection against scratches on flat surfaces as the iPad 2 sits inside of the band and won?t touch a table at all.
The Kensington BlackBelt Protection Band for iPad 2 has cutouts for all ports and buttons except the power button which is under the rubber cover. Since the case is quite thick, the ports are tucked away deep inside the band. You should have no trouble using the charging/syncing cable included with the iPad 2 or the Apple style earbuds, but it?s unlikely your iPad 2 will fit into any docking station or audio system while inside of the band. Side buttons aren?t that hard to use either, and it?s nice to see that the case has a cutout for the built-in mic for video chats and a cutout for the speaker grill. The power button is under the band, but it?s very easy to press. The cutout for the rear camera is perfectly centered, and you should be able to use the rear camera with the band on.
The Kensington BlackBelt Protection Band covers 0.5? on the front of the iPad 2, and has semicircle cutouts for the front camera and the Home button, giving both an easy access while the tablet is sitting in the case.
The Kensington BlackBelt Protection Band has the simplicity of a bumper case but it?s built to provide serious protection for the structure of the tablet as well as keeping it off of flat surfaces. The band also gives a very nice and sturdy grip to the iPad 2 and has cutouts and easy access to everything on the tablet. The band does add some bulk and weight, a trade off for great protection.