Customer Review

103 of 130 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mediocre case; wait for third-party options, July 7, 2011
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This review is from: HP TouchPad Custom Fit Case (Personal Computers)
I have been using and developing for WebOS since the tail end of the Palm days, so I am incredibly biased in favor of the TouchPad. I absolutely love this tablet, and the Touchstone charging station is as life-changing a switch from the iPad's dock as the original Touchstone was when I tossed my iPhone in favor of a Palm Pre.

This case, on the other hand, is hand's down the weakest link in the launch-day accessories for the TouchPad. The only reason to get this case is if you are worried about scratching up the back of your TouchPad, or you tend to set the TouchPad down on surfaces that are slick enough to cause it to slide. Otherwise, the case adds a bit more bulk to the device without any significant benefits.

The whole case is constructed out of what feels like a hard rubber, with the inside lined with a soft (but not fuzzy) fabric. Aesthetically, it looks alright. The matte black with barely-distinguishable HP logo is certainly nice. I also like that the power and volume buttons do not have cut-outs, but instead have flexible extrusions in the rubber itself.

I was surprised to find that to fit the TouchPad into the case you have to physically snap it in, but since the rubber sides have a bit of give this isn't too hard. Getting it out would be a challenge, but the case supposedly allows charging on the Touchstone dock without removing it, so that theoretically isn't an issue.

In practice, however, I could not get the Touchstone to charge my TouchPad with the case on. There are some cryptic drawings on a pamphlet included with the case that seem to indicate you can only charge the TouchPad if the flap on the case is downward (and thus lying all over the table), but I was unable to get it to charge in any orientation.

And speaking of the flap, that is the absolute worst part of this case. Because it was hinged like the iPad 2's awesome Smart Cover, I was expecting it to be similarly anchored with magnets or something. This is not the case. The flap has a single strip of velcro that you can use to prop it at a couple of angles (the back also has a velcro flap), but it does not anchor to the front of the device at all. Which means that if you hold the TouchPad in any position except horizontal, the flap falls open.

For myself, the case is thus rendered useless. With the Touchstone charging fiddly or non-operational, the cheap approach of velcro for propping the thing up, and the lack of any sort of fastening for the front flap, I may as well spare myself the extra bulk and annoyance of a flap that flaps around when I move it and use the device without a case. My recommendation would be to go buy a TwelveSouth Compass stand (or one of the similar competitors) for propping your device upright, and forego a case until third parties release something more useful.
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Comments

Tracked by 2 customers

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Showing 1-7 of 7 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jul 14, 2011 5:16:04 AM PDT
LA6507 says:
I agree with Mr. Beck's rating but for different reasons. While I do agree that this case is not of the quality that I would expect for a $600 tablet, mine does allow me to charge my TouchPad while in both orientations, and my TP is not even flush to the front of the Touchstone so I am not sure what the problem with Mr. Beck's setup. I only charge with the speakers pointed downward or to the left, never any other way, and I always fold the cover flap so that it is flush with the back of the case. On another note, I think HP decided to utilize a plastic back for the TP since they figured that most people would use a case to protect their TPs. I think they made the right call.

Posted on Aug 27, 2011 8:37:42 PM PDT
J. Bazin says:
was your touchstone plugged in? :}

Posted on Sep 15, 2011 6:25:43 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 15, 2011 6:25:56 PM PDT
Ketty says:
By the way, for the reviewer and people who aren't aware of this. The Touchpad only charges in two orientations (not all four). It only charges with the home button on the bottom in portrait or the speakers on the bottom in landscape. I wish it would charge with the speakers on the top. That way, I can flip the cover over the touchstone and also have sound propagate better from the speakers. Unfortunately, it doesn't charge that way. Really poor design on HP's part.

Posted on Sep 16, 2011 10:38:50 AM PDT
TJDyl says:
I have had no problem charging the TouchPad in the Touchstone with this case. I don't believe it requires elaborate instructions to figure out how to charge the TouchPad. You place the TouchPad on the Touchstone and voila!

Posted on Sep 19, 2011 10:54:18 PM PDT
Evan's A&V says:
Unfortunately, there are no good third party options. I tried a Moko case and it was awful.

Posted on Sep 28, 2011 2:57:42 PM PDT
C. Johnson says:
keep in mind the touchstone only charges in 2 positions. If it doesn't charge in one position, flip the touchpad to one side. I don't get why it won't work on all 4 sides. Its kinda lame it only charges on 2 sides. This might be what you're seeing. Not sure if it allows charing through the case tho?

Posted on Jun 2, 2012 12:03:35 AM PDT
I agree that there are some flaws in the official HP folio case but I think this reviewer had unrealistic expectations. No one ever said it was secured with magnets, so dont complain that it isnt. A Smart Cover is much more than the Folio (at thats comparing current Smart Price cover to original Folio MSRP) and provides much less material, its only the flap.

The velcro works great and holds the Touchpad in a number of ways for easy viewing and use.

The Folio case most certainly supports use with the Touchstone charger.

The flaw with the Folio case is that the rubber edges are not so durable. Heat causes the parts bordering the micro-usb port and bottom edges to warp outwards, as does taking it out of the case often. People who use the Touchstone in conjunction with the Folio case have reported even more widespread warping.

That being said it is the best case for the Touchpad. The 3rd party versions are inferior usually and not even priced very well. Id say the next best case for the Touchpad is the HP Leather Sleeve, which provides good protection for storage but is just a cover, and not a case (you cant use the touchpad while its in the sleeve). Keep in mind you can also use certain iPad 1 cases with the Touchpad. For $12 and under I would recommend buying this official HP Folio Case. For $5 buy two (HP.com currently has them for that price).
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Reviewer

Ian Beck
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Location: Seattle, WA

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