Nicely designed products for Apple devices.

Twelve South, one of my favorite accessory companies, makes a unique case for iPhone and iPad that protects while being minimal, too. I typically like cases for my devices and I’m always on the lookout for specially designed items. The SurfacePad is a luxury leather cover that is designed to work with your iOS device. Like many of their products, the SurfacePad compliments the beauty of Apple products while still being functional.

The SurfacePad has been available for the iPhone for a few years, but now, Twelve South has made it available for the iPad Pro 10.5, too. The design of the SurfacePad hasn’t changed as Twelve South has developed the accessory for other Apple products. It still sticks to the back of the device it’s going to protect and wraps around to cover the front. The front cover is considered ‘hardback’ and is lined with soft microfiber to protect the iPad screen. It does activate the sleep/wake function of the iPad.

Twelve South SurfacePad and PencilSnap REVIEW

The SurfacePad is meant to have a smooth, modern design. It features a cutout around the camera on the back so that you can still use it and the cover allows for multi-angle viewing, too. What is remarkable about this case is that it protects your device without requiring that you snap it into a hard plastic case. Before you select a protective case, you need to ask yourself what you are protecting against. For example, if you are a weekend warrior and like to trek into the wildness, this case may not be hearty enough for you. SurfacePad is really meant for mild protection. It’s strong, but the sides are still exposed as a part of the minimal design. The nice thing about this is that you can still use accessories like the Smart Keyboard since it doesn’t cover the connector edge of the iPad.

Twelve South SurfacePad and PencilSnap REVIEW

Along with the SurfacePad for iPad Pro, Twelve South has also released the PencilSnap, a luxury leather case for the Apple Pencil. It’s magnetic and designed to stay attached to the SurfacePad. The PencilSnap is very nicely made case. It covers the back of the pencil 100% and has about a 1/3 cutout to be able to grab the pencil easily. Twelve South calls it a ‘holster’ and I would consider that an accurate description. It’s meant to be a complimentary accessory to the SurfacePad — an accessory for an accessory if you will.

Twelve South SurfacePad and PencilSnap REVIEW

After installing the SurfacePad on the iPad Pro 10.5, I found it to be a beautiful option for protecting the iPad but thought it was a little difficult to install. The SurfacePad is adhesive and should be stuck to the back of your iPad. You have to line it up with the camera to make sure that you don’t cover it up. If you mess up, you can try again, but it doesn’t seem to stick quite as well the second time around. Therefore, you basically have one shot to line it up right. The adhesive is very strong and will keep the SurfacePad secure. I did have an iPad Mini at one point and kept it protected with a SurfacePad. The cover did an excellent job of keeping the iPad Mini safe and I never had any problems with it peeling off of the iPad.

Twelve South SurfacePad and PencilSnap REVIEW

And yes, while you can technically use the SmartKeyboard AND the SurfacePad at the same time it is a little awkward. Since the keyboard can act as a screen cover, it seems a little redundant to use both especially if you are trying to pack light.

I do like the PencilSnap. It’s a creative way to protect the Apple Pencil. The case is slick and really stylish, but unfortunately, it doesn’t stick to the SurfacePad quite as well as you want it to. It will attach to the SurfacePad and if you are carrying it gently, it will stay in place. It will also be good for keeping the pencil from rolling off of a flat surface. But, I decided to shake the iPad around with the PencilSnap attached and after a couple of hard shakes, it flew off.

I love the style of these products from Twelve South. I feel that for me, they aren’t going to be my cases of choice, but love how well they are designed and how they work with the Apple products. Depending on your type of use, these minimal cases for the iPad Pro 10.5 and Apple Pencil might be perfectly ideal for you.

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