I’m a big fan of cheap cases for my devices. It usually takes me a few tries to track down a specific case for a device that’s high quality despite the price, but once I do, I’m golden. I don’t think some of the simpler cases out there are worth what brand name manufacturers want for them, and one major advantage (for me) of using cheap cases is that I can buy several, give some away, and use some for DIY projects.
My current iPad mini case setup consists of an official Apple Smart Cover (which is of course extremely overpriced), and a plastic back cover that I got off eBay for $1.99 many months back. The case is perfect for my use; it keeps the Smart Cover locked to the iPad, all the cutouts are perfect (unlike certain brand name cases I tried), the rubberized texture makes the iPad better to hold, and it’s easy to add magnets to it so that it actually keeps the Smart Cover locked to the back when open.
I posted both a review and later a video tutorial for adding magnets back when I first got the case, and be it because of that or not, the most popular colors ended up being sold out from the eBay seller shortly after that. They’ve been sold out for a while now, but a couple of weeks ago all colors came back in stock, and I ordered a batch to see if they were still good. I got them a few days ago, and the quality is just as superb as the last time around. Perfect cutouts, same texture, and great fit.
I do have to point out that two versions of the case is being sold as the same; one with and one without the plastic locking mechanism that keeps the Smart Cover locked to the iPad. My batch of five covers had four with and one without the lock, and while the seller might be able to send you specific ones if you ask, there’s no way to select which option you want from the eBay page.
I have to say I’m still amazed at the value you get with these covers, and I personally love being able to keep a few around for DIY and gift use. My original cover is still in perfect condition, though, for anyone wondering about longevity.
You can grab this cover for $1.99 from eBay.