KHOMO Super Slim Smart Cover iPad mini case review
by JULIE on JANUARY 17, 2013 · the-gadgeteer.com
The other day Janet and I were talking about cases, and I mentioned that I loved the Amazon case for the Kindle Paperwhite and wished there was one just like it for the iPad mini. Janet went into research mode and sent me links to all kinds of cases trying to find one that I’d like. When she stumbled upon the KHOMO Super Slim Smart Cover iPad mini case, we both ordered one immediately. We’re going to tag team a review to tell you what we think.
Note: Images can be clicked to view a larger size.
My comments are in Black and Janet’s are in Blue italics.
Julie: First of all, when they say this case is slim, they aren’t kidding. It adds almost no bulk to the mini. The design is very similar to Apple’s own Smart Case for the regular iPad. Interestingly enough, Apple doesn’t offer a smaller version for the mini, which just seems odd.
Janet: I like this KHOMO case much more than I would have liked a smaller version of Apple’s Smart Case. The back of the Super Slim Smart Cover case has smooth, rounded edges that don’t hurt my hands like Apple’s case did, and the front cover fits better than the one on the Apple case.
Julie: The KHOMO case is made of polyurethane and is available in several colors including Black, Red, Blue, Orange, Pink and Purple. I picked the Orange case as you can see above.
Janet: I got the blue case, because it reminds me of the blue Smart Cover I had for my iPad 2. I’ve used the KHOMO case every day for at least a couple of weeks now, and it doesn’t show any dirt or stains. For this type of case – one that’s going in my purse to protect my iPad mini from keys and pens – I prefer the polyurethane to leather. I don’t have to worry about scuffs or damage to an expensive leather case.
Julie: I’ve only been using the KHOMO for a couple of days. I like it so far, but I think I like the Bear Motion Brazilian Buffalo Leather Folio case a little better even though it’s a little bulkier.
Janet: The upper right of the front cover is embossed with the KHOMO logo.
Julie: Other than that logo, there is no other branding on the case – which I appreciate.
Julie: The case features a snap in plastic tray that protects the back of the mini and a suede lined foldable cover that protects the display.
Janet: The inside of the tray is smooth, hard plastic. The outside of the tray is coated with something that feels just like the polyurethane of the exterior of the front. It has a nice, almost velvety feel. The interior of the front cover feels like the microfiber interior of the Smart Cover, and I’ve noticed it leaves the same clean/dirty streaks on my iPad’s screen as the official Apple cover.
Julie: Hmmmmm, I haven’t noticed any streaks on my display…
Julie: The iPad mini easily snaps into the tray with a perfect fit which adds very little bulk / weight to the tablet.
Janet: The case adds 4.6 ounces to the weight of the iPad. Even with the extra weight, the mini doesn’t feel like it weighs anything. With the iPad mini in place, the case measures 7.9″ long X 5.3″ wide X about 0.3″ thick.
The cover has magnets that work to sleep/wake the iPad mini, and it functions just as well as the official Smart Cover I bought for the mini. It may actually work better, because this front cover doesn’t tend to slip around a bit like my Smart Cover does. The magnets also hold the cover closed pretty tightly, even when the mini is stuffed in my purse.
Julie: The tray does have a slight lip around the sides, but it’s not high enough be very noticeable.
Janet: It’s just enough to give my thumb a little extra purchase on the thin iPad mini and make it easier to hold with a one-handed “pinch” grip on one side.
Julie: There is access to all the the ports and buttons, such as the Lightning connector and speakers on the bottom edge.
I’ve noticed that the cover on my KHOMO case doesn’t lay completely flat. You can see it is raised up a teeny tiny bit on the left side in the image above. Yes, I’m probably being way too picky.
Janet: Mine does that, too. It doesn’t stick up much, as you can see in the picture, and I don’t think it causes a problem when the case is in my purse.
Janet: Using the Lightning cable while the mini is in this case works great. Those those two hard, plastic bars on each end of the connector allow just enough room for the Lightning connector on the cable, but it blocks the Lightning adapter. Apple should consider necking that end of the adapter down to the size of the Lightning connector, so it will work with more cases and other accessories.
Janet: The opening for the headphone plug is tight, and you’ll need a skinny plug to fit it in there. You may have trouble with some 90-degree plugs, too. My Sony headphones have a removable cable with a straight connector on one end and a 90-degree connector on the other. The 90-degree end actually fits better in this opening. The opening for the sleep/wake button is big enough that I have no trouble using that button.
Julie: The connector on my Bose MIE2i mobile headset don’t fit at all. But that’s not a huge deal to me because I never use headphones/earphones with my mini.
Janet: I don’t have any trouble using the volume buttons or the mute/screen-lock slider, either.
Janet: The cover folds back completely flat because of the soft hinge. There are no magnets in the back of the case to hold the front cover completely open.
I’ve used the case for many, many hours, and the hinge still seems sturdy, with only faint creasing. I won’t have to worry about it tearing loose from the back cover.
I like that the raised lip on the hard back cover stops at the hinge area. This opening makes it easier to clean the screen by allowing me to push the lint right off the side of the screen.
Janet: Just like Apple’s Smart Cover, the KHOMO front cover is segmented to roll up into a triangular stand; magnets hold the cover in the triangular form. The KHOMO case has four segments, like the original iPad Smart Cover did. The Apple Smart Cover for the iPad mini has only three segments. I’m not sure that the number of segments matter; it’s just something I noticed.
Janet: The stand holds the mini in either a horiztonal viewing position or in a flat, typing position. It seems sturdy and stable in either orientation.
Janet: The KHOMO Super Slim Smart Cover Case is my favorite of the cases I’ve tried with my iPad mini. This is exactly what I had wanted from Apple’s Smart Case but didn’t get. The case is snug and very form-fitting, but it’s easy to get on and off the mini. It fits tightly around the edges, and it doesn’t pull away from the iPad when I grab it by the side like the Apple case did. It’s lightweight, and I don’t really notice any extra weight or bulk with the case on the iPad mini. It protects my mini in my purse. It’s the only case I’ve used on my mini since I got it, and I can’t imagine there’s a case out there that I could possibly like more than this KHOMO.
Julie: I agree that this is a great case. I have no complaints about the materials or construction. It’s inexpensive at $12.99, available in several colors and it adds almost no bulk to the mini. There’s really nothing not to like about it. That said, like I mentioned above, I prefer the Bear Motion case just a little more even though it’s slightly bulkier. I like the thicker cover, which lays more flat and the feel of the leather. I’ll probably end up going back to that case once I finish reviewing the other mini cases in my review queue