gadg-et-oid [gaj-it-oid]


1. having the characteristics or form of a gadget;
resembling a mechanical contrivance or device.

Incipio Feather Polycarbonate Shell iPad Case Review

The Incipio feather is, perhaps, the holy Grail of iPad shell cases lacking only in the grip department. It’s smooth matte finish is far more appealing than fingerprint-attracting gloss alternatives such as the Speck CandyShell, but unfortunately provides no more grip than the back of a naked iPad, and still attracts a few greasy finger smudges.

Despite being so simple, the feather is an extremely well made iPad shell case which lacks almost any outward sign of the plastic moulding process. No mould lines mar the beautifully smooth and minimal edges, and just a single, miniscule point in the centre of the case shows where plastic was injected. This level of moulding quality is something I haven’t seen in any other silicone or rubber cases yet, including the Speck CandyShell.

When is a WiFi-only iPad not a WiFi-only iPad?:

Mobile wifi

The Incipio Feather gets its name from it’s extremely lightweight and minimal design, there’s barely anything to this case, with just enough to protect the corners and most of the sides of the iPad in addition, of course, to the back. As with any good quality case, the Feather comes with a screen protector, too, completing an almost all-round protection in one, absurdly diminutive kit.

I looked at the Black Incipio feather, but the case is available in Purple, Magenta, Frost and Charcoal too. The black looks pretty stunning, and is definitely one of the few shell cases that doesn’t taint the sharp good looks of a naked iPad. I’d really love to get my hands on the Purple, Frost and Charcoal versions, simply because it’s great to take the iPad out in a new set of clothes every day.

The Feather fits the iPad like a very tight glove, it was pretty difficult to get on, but this isn’t surprising for a hard shell case. The real genius in it’s design is that it manages to clip securely to the iPad without protruding more than a fraction of a millimetre above the screen. The corners don’t clip on, which looks a bit funny when you first apply it (the corners look broken or bent) but the reason for the lack of clips becomes clear soon after- I’d be really tricky to get this case on if the corners clipped into place too.

The case on it’s own is extremely light, yet strong and flexible. Once clamped onto the iPad it’ll protect from scratches and scuffs, but lacks in the shock absorption department. Obviously it has no padding, being a hard case, and the included screen protector is all the front protection you’re going to get without a separate zip-up case.

Fortunately Incipio have a lovely companion case to the Feather, the similarly light and slim Tek.Nical zip-up slip case, which I will be covering separately. The iPad fits into this, Feather and all, and they’re definitely a winning combination. With the Incipio Feather costing a paltry $34.99 (or around £30 on my side of the pond) and the Tek.Nical costing the same $34.99 (and seemingly £20 in the UK), the $70, or £50 combo represents absolutely fantastic value for money and great all-round protection. Incipio have done themselves proud here.

This is a tricky case to photograph, as there’s barely any substance to it. But I’m going to give it a try!

Friday, June 25th, 2010, iPad.