Recently I received two cases for the iPad to review from LaCie. Although billed as 10" laptop or 3.5" hard disk cases, they're just the right size for the iPad. My interest in comparing the two cases is that the LaCie Coat (designed by Sam Hecht) is made from the usual synthetic materials, albeit in a very strikingly designed case, and the LaCie Vegetal is an environmentally friendly case made out of linen, bamboo jersey and soya based foam padding! This is the first time I've looked at a case made out of plants!
The Coat is a smarter design and also manufactured to a high standard. I already use a smaller Coat for my WD Passport external drive and it provides excellent protection. The interior lining protects the iPad screen and the exterior Neoprene padding, with a curious but strangely attractive bubble effect, provides a cushion against impacts. As the case is designed for a netbook it's a little deep for the iPad but not enough to be an issue.
Both cases will also hold the iPad in the official Apple iPad case if you want the benefits of the Apple case (stand, prop etc) when you're using your iPad, as well as padded protection when you're out and about. As the Apple case increases the dimensions of the iPad it actually makes it a better fit in both cases.
I also dug out my old Samsung netbook, now in service with my son, and both cases are ideal for netbook protection.
One suggestion to LaCie - they should update the product packaging to make it clear these cases fit the iPad, otherwise they're missing a trick!
Which case do I prefer? Very tricky but I think I come down in favour of the Vegetal, despite the strange name, which sounds like something you can eat!
With thanks to the the team at @Axicom for organising the review.
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