The below review was originally written August 14, 2012. Additional notes will be posted at the conclusion.
When I pre-ordered my Nexus7 and saw the OEM case, I must admit that I hesitated at first. I wasn’t really sure that that case was worth $20, but I wanted something to protect the N7 right away. I wasn’t sure when other N7 cases would come to market, so I purchased the OEM case.
The OEM case was not the solution for me. I am writing a review about the OEM case (Travel cover for Nexus 7 by ASUS).
I was attracted to the Caseen case because I wanted something of good quality and not some eBay/Amazon China mass-produced item. Yes, the Caseen is made in China, but it doesn’t look like it was rushed out. The Caseen looks like thought and care went into the design of the case.
I’ve had my Caseen for a little over a week. I really enjoy using it as opposed to the OEM case. I feel that the N7 has more protection. When I still had the OEM case, I went away on vacation and I was afraid of packing it in the suitcase. With the Caseen, I feel more comfortable putting it in a backpack or Messenger Bag.
The case is constructed of genuine leather. The inside is soft and will not damage the screen. All the ports, including the “Sleep/Wake” and “Volume” buttons are easily accessed and easy to press the buttons. Speaking of “Sleep/Wake,” the cover does contain a magnet which will activate the “auto Sleep/Wake” function of the tablet. The magnet will keep the cover in the closed position when not in use.
The cover does have a hand strap, so when you open the cover and bend it over behind the tablet, you can place use the hand strap to hold the tablet in the “portrait” position.
The case has holes on the back along the speaker area to allow the sound to come through. I have looked at other $30 – $40 cases and these cases do not have an area for the speaker. I haven’t tested these other cases, so I do not know how this affects the sound.
The Caseen DESIGNO also has an elastic loop to keep your stylus and the cover does convert into a stand so that you can place the N7 in “Landscape Mode” for both viewing and typing. I have found issues with both the elastic loop and also with using the “stand mode.” I have outlined these issues in video below:
The other issue I am running into with the case is that it is difficult to swipe down from the top in order to open the Notification Area. This is also demonstrated in the YouTube video. In addition to swiping for the Notification Area, I do find it difficult to access the “back, home, and recent apps” soft buttons when using the N7 in Landscape.
Overall, I do like the Caseen DESIGNO and would recommend it to anyone looking for a case for their Nexus 7. Considering that I am on the East Coast and Caseen is in California, they respond quickly to e-mail.
I’ve now had the Caseen DESIGNO for about two months. When I wrote this review, I had the first version of the case. There has since been a revision made and that case is shown in the YouTube video. I like this case, however, the difficulty in accessing the Notification Area is an annoyance. I am still unsure of the stability of the case when using the case in “Tent Mode.” I am always afraid of it falling over. There is a newer case that remedies both the difficulty in swiping and the stability, however, I haven’t had the opportunity to review that case.
I am recommending the Caseen DESIGNO. For $29.99 it is a good case.
Thank you Caseen for providing the case used for this review.