Official Nexus 7 Case Review

The official Nexus 7 case provides protection for the front and rear of the Google’s 7-inch tablet.

This $20 case is made of rubber with a matte finish that uses the same dot texture finish as the back of a bare Nexus 7. The soft touch material adds grip, but is not as pleasant to touch as the back of the Nexus 7, which is a shame.

The official Nexus 7 case retails for $20, but the only shipping option takes the price up to $30.

The rumors of a magnet in the official Nexus 7 case aren’t true. The case doesn’t activate a sleep and wake function when opened.

Official Nexus 7 Case Review

The official Nexus 7 case offers form-fitting protection for the Nexus 7.

The case provides protection from bumps and small drops. The front of the case is very flexible and does not offer a lot of protection. There is nothing to keep the front cover closed, which means no added bulk. With a case this small the lid stays shut while carrying it on either side.

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It will protect the screen from scratches, and during several drop tests from 4 to 5 feet to a soft surface the front cover remained closed, so it will offer some protection if you drop the Nexus 7. That said, I’m not sure how well it will fare against a hard surface like blacktop.

Official Nexus 7 Case Review - open folded back

With the front flap folded back the case will sit open.

The front cover folds around flat to the back I the Nexus 7. The hinge is flexible enough that I can lay the nexus down with the cover folded open and it will stay in place. It is comfortable to hold with the flap open on the hinge and on the open flap side.

Official Nexus 7 Case Review - front flap fit

The front flap of the Nexus 7 case doesn’t line up just right.

Out of the box the case fit the Nexus 7 poorly. The front flap was not uniform along the open side and the port openings were askew. After several hours of use and taking the case off and putting it on half a dozen times the port openings lined up better. The front cover is still askew, with a larger gap at the top of the case. This is a small issue, and one not all users will care about, but I expect more from an official case.

Official Nexus 7 Case Review - ports

The case openings offer plenty of room to plug in cords.

The case doesn’t officially offer a landscape dock mode for watching movies or video chatting in a Google Hangout, but it is possible to prop the Nexus 7 up with the front cover as shown in the image below. Just don’t plan to tap on the display while propped up like this as it is not stable.

Official Nexus 7 Case Review - propped in landscape

It’s possible to prop the Nexus 7 up in landscape mode with the official Nexus 7 case.

The case offers cutouts for the headphone and charging ports with plenty of clearance to fit larger headphone plugs. There is also a cutout for the microphone at the top of the device. The power and volume buttons are covered in plastic. They respond well to touch.

Official Nexus 7 Case Review - buttons

The power and volume buttons are covered in plastic.

The official Nexus 7 case doesn’t add significant bulk, but it doesn’t fit in the front pocket of my pants as easily as without, due to the added size and grippy material.

Official Nexus 7 Case Review - back

The official Nexus 7 case is not perfect.

Overall the official Nexus 7 case feels more like something you would find in a mall kiosk than a first party case. One of the nicer cases at the mall kiosk for sure, but still a far cry from what I expect for an official case with a total cost of $30.

Read: Best Nexus 7 Cases & Covers

If the finish was nicer, it used a magnet or a real landscape kickstand the Nexus 7 case would be worth the price, but I recommend saving the $30 and looking at another Nexus 7 case.

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Comments

  1. George says

    Looks ok for the job, but the problem is I don’t feel the Nexus really needs a case – we’re not talking premium quality a la ipad here. Seems sturdy and rugged enough to dispense with the need for one of these.

  2. Neil says

    Mine is in the shipping process. Lets hope I will not be disappointed. The price point is not exactly cheap.

  3. Greg says

    I just got mine. I wanted a little protection for it for whenever I through it in my bag. It’s decent for what it is. It’s a little flimsy and I miss the auto lock/unlock (ala iPad smart cover

    The biggest thing I hate about it is that button that covers the power button is too tight and keeps turning the screen on and off. Every once in a while it holds the button in so long that the Nexus resets itself. Any one else experiencing that issue?

    • Jonathan Hearn says

      I didn’t have a problem with it resetting, but you do have to massage it into place a little. I’m not sure if it’s the tight fit so much as the fact that it sometimes isn’t properly aligned with the buttons really well (I didn’t use it for an extended period). If it isn’t all the way in / aligned, then the thicker part of the case is in contact with the buttons, which makes them seem really sensitive.

      Like you I only need a case when I put it in my bag when going from place to place. Since that’s all I need, a pouch was ultimately my accessory of choice (and they’re cheaper).

      Personally I like the corduroy Trend Sleeve Case my company sells because it’s simple, keeps it safe from other objects in my bag, and isn’t a boring black leather case. And the price is great too.

      If you’re interested, check out the product page here: http://cesupplystore.com/content/Nexus_7.htm

      Video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lwfTgP0mJDs

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