Accessory Review: BoxWave Bamboo Case for iPad 2

On a beautiful Sunday morning, you set foot on a journey through the deepest part of the forest in the outskirts of Kyoto, Japan. You had entered the forest just a few hours prior to capture some gorgeous shots of the plants and scenery. Then, suddenly, you find yourself running for your life! You’re being chased by a giant panda in a life or death situation. Luckily, you’re able to hide yourself in the tall forest grass. But, the panda is not far away and it’s only a matter of time before he finds you. Fortunately, your iPad 2 is disguised in a bamboo case and you use it as a compass to find your way out of the jungle. You’re able to successfully fool the panda bear and survive by the slimmest of margins — mission accomplished.

All kidding aside, BoxWave’s Genuine Bamboo Case for iPad 2 is a natural and elegant case that is more than your average silicone or hard plastic case. Panda bears are herbivores anyways. We’ve got a closer look at this case and some of its competitors after the break! Check it out!


The case has a two-piece interlocking design that slides onto your iPad 2. I’m a big fan of the interlocking design because it’s both convenient and secure. My only complaint about this design choice is that the top piece of the case seems somewhat warped and doesn’t align perfectly with the bottom piece. This is a really insignificant flaw, but it’s worth pointing out and is something that I’ve seen before. You can get this case in cherry red and onyx black in addition to the natural bamboo color seen below.

If you thought that this case was made of fake bamboo, you’re wrong. The materials almost entirely derive from real bamboo plants. The case has a smooth finish with rounded corners and feels great in your hands. It’s also considerably heavier than silicone, hard plastic, or most other cases because of the bulkiness of the case. Bamboo is pretty light in comparison to most other types of woods, but it’s still heavier than silicone or hard plastic.

There are openings in the case for the dock connector, speakers, microphone, volume controls and mute button, as well as the sleep/wake button. Each opening is large enough to avoid inhibiting the accessibility of these physical buttons on the iPad. There’s also an opening on the back for the camera, which remains to have an unobstructed viewing angle with the case on the iPad. The front-facing camera is also unobstructed because the case does not cover the front bezel.

Oddly enough, there is no opening for the headphone jack. I highly doubt that this was something that BoxWave would do on purpose, so it was most likely something that was merely overlooked. Nevertheless, it bewilders me how something like this might even make it to the production line without getting noticed. If you had planned on listening to music with headphones, you’ll have to make a “DIY” hole or suffice without headphone jack access.

[UPDATE: It turns out that the case that I received as a product sample was an earlier prototype. BoxWave confirmed that the case does in fact have a headphone jack opening, which is really great to hear. This updated information has led to adjustments in the scoring of this review.]

Score: ★★★½


It might be hard to believe, but bamboo is actually an extremely strong and durable material. It’s a common building material in places like China and Japan, and is used for thing such as scaffolding and roofing. Since BoxWave used real bamboo in the design of this case, you get the same great protection and durability for your iPad 2.

The form-fitting design of this case will ensure that no dust or other particles get stuck between the case and the iPad 2. This will prevent any scratches or other wear and tear. There is also a soft velvet lining on the interior of the case intended to prevent the case from scratching your iPad when you are sliding on the two interlocking pieces. I’m always overly paranoid about scratching my device, so I’m thankful that this case by BoxWave has yet to do so.

Score: ★★★★½


BoxWave’s Genuine Bamboo Case for iPad 2 retails for $69.95, including free shipping within the United States. There are no pack-ins such as a screen protector or microfiber cloth. Although this case is somewhat expensive, it’s still a decent price to pay for a bamboo case. If you’re not completely satisfied with your purchase, BoxWave has a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Two noteworthy competitors for this type of case are the DODOcase ($59.95, some colors $64.95), and Grove’s Plain case ($99), which is made of a combination of bamboo and genuine leather.

Score: ★★★

Final Thoughts

This is definitely one of the more creative iPad cases that I have seen. Unfortunately, its durability and unique design are hindered by the lack of a headphone jack opening and the burden of weight that the bamboo has. Nevertheless, it’s certainly a very good case if the headphone jack isn’t your top priority. The bamboo looks great, especially against the white iPad 2. Plus, the case is eco-friendly because it’s not made of a synthetic material like silicone or hard plastic.

Cumulative Score:

† All prices are in US currency.
This review was written by the Review Team. Overall scores are rounded to the nearest half or full star.
Thanks to Crystal at BoxWave for the review sample.

Post a response / What do you think?