Otterbox are known for their rugged protective cases for Smartphones and Tablets and they have recently introduced a modular line – the Agility Tablet System. It is available for iPad Mini, iPad 2/3/4, iPad Air and Samsung Galaxy Tablets. I tested the iPad 2/3/4 system. In my household, like many others the kids get to use the older iPads and we still have iPad 2 and 3 that are used daily. Any time kids are using iPads having them in a protective case is a high priority, so I am always interested to test out any new protective cases on the market.
The Shell is the heart of the Agility system, none of the other accessories work without it. The Shell is a hard plastic case, it has a cutout on the back of the case that connects with all the other parts of the Agility system. The Shell gives the iPad drop protection, it is made of a thick layer of plastic and is very solid. It has a raised edge that sticks out past the edges of the iPad in all directions adding extra protection of dropped on an edge or corner. There are cutouts over the speaker, buttons and ports, there is not a screen protector. The Shell can be used on its own as a case, and my children will usually use the Shell without a cover when playing games on the iPad. The Shell comes in Charcoal Grey, and retails for $39.95.
All of the accessories for the Agility system have a strong magnet in the shape of a circle with 4 tabs on them. This magnet fits perfectly into the cutout on the back of the Shell, so that the accessory connects to the iPad. The circular shape allows the iPad to be rotated, and the tabs make sure it stops perfectly in landscape or portrait position and keep the iPad securely in this position.
The Folio and Portfolio Covers.
The Folio is the more slimline of the case options and comes in Apple Grey, it retails for $49.95. The Folio is similar to the Apple Smart Cover but with the addition of the magnet for connecting to the Shell. The front has a vinyl type covering and inside is a micro-fibre lining. It has automatic wake/sleep for the iPad when the cover is opened or closed. The Folio can be folded to create a stand for the iPad but I didn’t find this very stable – it was easy to accidentally collapse the Folio when touching the screen.
The Portfolio is the more luxurious outer case option, it comes in black leather with a grey micro-fibre lining and retails for $69.95. The Portfolio has a magnetic clasp and automatic sleep/ wake when the cover is closed or opened. There are 2 flaps inside the Portfolio which create a 2 position stand for the iPad, I found that this worked much better than the Folio stand and was quite stable in both positions. The Portfolio is larger and heavier than the Folio but I thought it was a much nicer case option.
The Wall Mount is a 2 piece mount that allows you to securely mount your iPad on a wall or other flat surface. The back plate can be attached to the wall with 3M Command Strips (which come attached to the plate) or with 2 screws. Once the back plate is in position the front plate slides onto it via 2 grooves on the sides, the 2 parts attach very firmly together. The front plate has the magnetic mount and includes an even stronger magnet than the cases have so the iPad is very securely mounted. The Agility mount system lets you easily change the iPad from landscape to portrait mode. This is a great idea if you like cooking using your iPad and want to keep it off the counter, clean and protected from spills and could also be used in a bathroom or on the wall by a treadmill or exercise bike. It comes in a choice or Charcoal or White and retails for $29.95.
The Dock is a great multi-position stand for the iPad, it retails for $49.95 and comes in Charcoal. It has a weighted base which makes it very stable. The iPad connects to the Dock (via the Shell) with the standard Agility magnetic mount which is Part of the upper section of the Dock. The viewing angle can be adjusted to any angle from lying flat to just under 90° (it will not go completely to 90° to prevent it toppling over.) The dock needs to be on a flat surface such as a table or countertop and works really well as a stand for movie viewing or working on the iPad. It can also be used on a desk when using the iPad as a second screen for your computer.
We did not test the Power Base, but it is designed to be used underneath the Dock creating a powered docking station. It has 3 USB ports allowing it to charge 3 iOS or Android devices at once. It comes in Charcoal and retails for $49.95
I love the flexibilty of the Agility system, it gives great drop protection but also allows for a variety of different covers, mounting and charging options. One downside of the system is that it is, like most protective case options, quite bulky and heavy. The Shell on its own is similar in weight to other protective cases so when you add the Folio or Portfolio it is heavier still. It does not have a screen protector, which for some people may be a problem, but I actually like it without – the screen is more responsive than with a screen protector and it is protected from scratches in transit if it has the Folio or Portfolio cover on. The magnetic mount system works very well and I love the idea of being able to add the Power Base to the Dock so that it can be a charging system as well as stand.
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Otterbox have kindly offered to give an Agility System Package to one lucky iMums Reader – the Package consists of one Shell + Portfolio +Dock + Wall Mount, total value of the package is over $170. The winner can choose a package for iPad 2/3/4, or iPad Mini or iPad Air. Winner must have valid US shipping address. Enter via Rafflecopter below, winner will be contacted by email and must respond within 48 hours to claim their prize.
NOTE: Products were supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.