Urban Armor Gear are a company that offer great protection, well-constructed designs and great looking cases for your smartphones and tablets. We’re checking our the Folio Case for the iPad Mini range today. The Folio Case boasts a feather-light construction, impact resistant core and over sized tactile buttons with easy access to the screen and ports. Let’s see how it performs.
Currently on sale here in the UK for just under £30 on Amazon (usual RRP £41.99), the Scout Folio offers excellent value. With many of Apple’s standard cases, which offer little to no protection, costing around the £20 – £30 mark, the Scout Folio could be an excellent choice for if you’re looking for both value and protection.
We recently checked out the Urban Armor Gear Navigator case for iPhone 6, which performed very well and also boasted the similar protection as the Scout Folio. We therefore have high hopes that we’ll see similar results today.
UAG makes rugged, light weight, drop tested phone cases for the Apple iPhone, Samsung Galaxy & Note series, LG G4, HTC One series, and Nexus 6. Our tablet line consist of rugged cases for the Microsoft Surface Pro 3 & Surface 3, Apple iPad Air 1 & 2, and iPad Mini line.
Product Overview & Testing
The Scout Folio arrives in a see-through plastic box, and also on its own due to tablet cases not coming with the HD screen protector seen with the smartphone range. We’re not sure of the reasoning behind this.
Sporting a completely rubber exterior, the Scout Folio immediately feels very protective. The entire case, apart from the edges, incorporates a honeycomb design and also looks and feels heavily padded. Don’t be fooled though, it’s not an overly bulky case despite the well-padded nature of the Scout Folio.
The honeycomb patterned exterior also provides a decent amount of grip whilst holding your tablet. Did we also mention the exterior is quite water resistant? Yeah, don’t worry if you spill your drink. UAG have got it covered.
Despite being a bulky case, all of your ports and buttons are still accessible. The cutouts for the iPad’s speakers are larger than the speaker itself, allowing for un-compromised audio. The cutout for the camera also allows for better photo-taking thanks to the depth of the cutout which cuts out unnecessary light and helps to create glare-free photos.
Similarly the microphone and headphone ports feature over sized cutouts to ensure microphone quality isn’t compromised and that all headphones can be used with the case.
The Scout Folio features over sized tactile buttons, which personally I’m not a fan of. Whilst these do offer good protection, I found them difficult to push sometimes and it was difficult to tell whether I had actually pressed them occasionally.
The rear of the case also features the same design as the Navigator case we reviewed, with fake screws being included on the centre of the case to add to the well-constructed feel of the case.
Being a folio type of case, the Scout Folio obviously doubles up as a stand as well. Instead of the usual folio case design, the Scout Folio sports a “hinged” design where the cover and case are connected by a c-shaped piece of rubber material.
This really helps with watching films, browsing the web or just sending emails. The Scout Folio doesn’t follow the same rules as other Folio cases though. Whereas other Folio cases have cutouts or grooves to keep the tablet upright, the Scout Folio makes use of the “sticky” rubberised surface of the screen cover to keep your tablet upright wherever you see fit. Not being restricted to having to use grooves for the stand functionality of the case drastically increases your viewing angles, allowing you to position the screen at virtually any angle.
I found that positioning the screen too close to the edge (within around 2cm) did not work overly well with the case eventually giving way and collapsing. Similarly pushing too hard at the top of the tablet’s screen whilst in “stand mode” can cause the tablet to slide down the case and collapse.
This shouldn’t really be too much of an issue as long as you’re only lightly touching the screen. I don’t see why you’d need to use any more force than a light touch anyway.
One thing I found that bothered me was that bits of the rubber backing on the screen cover occasionally got transferred on to the screen when the case was closed. This could be because it’s a new case and hasn’t been used for months on end, but I’ll report back at a later date regarding this issue.
The case’s cover works well, and thanks to the inclusion of a magnetic edge the iPad’s display will turn off when the case is closed and turn on when you open the case. A great feature, although something to fasten the case shut would be a great addition. I feel the overall protective qualities get diminished slightly if the case can’t be sealed shut.
A rather pointless, but impressive, feature of the Scout Folio is how well the rubber coating of the cover performs. I filmed a short video of me turning over at around a 90 degree angle, and thanks to the rubber coated cover the tablet doesn’t actually move or fall down.
In terms of protection, the Urban Armor Gear Scout Folio case definitely gets a thumbs up from us. The slight bulkiness of the case could be an issue for some, but it’s highly unlikely that you’d find a low profile case that offers the same protection as the Scout Folio.
We’re quite a fan of the design. The ability to have many different viewing angles instead of being confined to just the usual 2 or 3, is very unique. The honeycomb effect across the exterior of the case also adds a bit of style to what would otherwise be a rather plain design.
The case, despite the thickness of the design, is very light and this almost detracts from the bulkiness.
The lack of a clip, or similar, to fasten the case shut when closed is a little upsetting, however I don’t feel this necessarily reduces the cases ability to protect to the point where I wouldn’t recommend the Scout Folio.
Overall, the Urban Armor Gear Scout Folio cases offers a lightweight design, great protection, a uniquely designed stand and sports an acceptable price tag, resulting in an overall score of 9/10 from Tech-Reviews. With a few amendments to the rubber coating of the cover and perhaps something to secure the case when closed, the Scout Folio would score 10s all around.