The best iPad Pro cases for 2023

Apple tablets are delicate, so pick up one of the best iPad Pro cases immediately because you never want to scroll or stroll naked.

Best for artists

The Otterbox Defender is the best Ipad pro case for artists.

OtterBox Defender Series

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Best for note-taking

The Logitech Pro is the best Ipad Pro case for note-taking.

Logitech Slim Folio Pro

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Best with keyboard

The Apple Magic Keyboard is the best Ipad Pro case with keyboard.

Apple Magic Keyboard

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An iPad Pro case can add functionality to your device while protecting it from full-on catastrophe. A full-sized Apple tablet can be more expensive than some laptop computers currently on the market and you’re going to want to make sure you have it working in top shape for a long time to come. That doesn’t mean to have to hide that alluring industrial design in a drab slab of plastic. All of our picks for the best iPad Pro cases will help you to protect your property in style. You’ll also find specific recommendations that we are making based on how you plan to use your 12.9-inch iPad Pro in all its vivid glory.

How we selected the best iPad Pro cases 

When deciding which iPad Pro 12.9 case would best suit different users, we considered popular functions of these Apple tablets. While some people employ the iPad Pro for leisure activities such as watching a movie or playing a game, many consumers who opt for an iPad Pro use it for drawing and other artistic pursuits. In order to address these differences, our subcategories of best iPad Pro cases include specific recommendations for illustrators and writers and DJs, for example. Once we thought about how people use their iPad Pro, we looked at how people like their iPad Pro cases, combining critical and public opinion with our own staff experiences to select the top options.

The best iPad Pro cases: Reviews & Recommendations

Best with keyboard: Apple Magic Keyboard

Teacher’s Pet

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Why it made the cut: Apple’s own keyboard and case combination bypasses the strain of other tablet typing solutions.


  • Item dimensions: 11.5 x 9.41 x 0.87 inches
  • Color: Black
  • Weight: 2 pounds


  • Ergonomic
  • Can charge iPad through keyboard
  • Sturdy


  • More costly 
  • White model shows dirt more quickly

Having Apple Magic, the best iPad Pro case with a keyboard attached to your iPad Pro is about as close as it gets to being able to have a laptop experience without springing for an actual laptop. The layout is ergonomic for your hands and has a satisfying heft. While there are a number of third-party keyboards you can buy that will work, the most optimized iPad Pro case with a keyboard is going to be Apple’s own creation. Except in rare instances of less than optimal performance, you probably won’t have to worry about the Magic Keyboard draining your iPad battery too quickly or feel like there’s a lag happening that can interrupt your creative flow. At 2 pounds, it’s a noticeable addition to your iPad Pro when you are trying to travel light and it doesn’t feature any edge protection. On the other hand, the Apple Magic Keyboard offers some heavy functionality that truly justifies the extra weight.

Best for note-taking: Logitech Slim Folio Pro

Something to Write Home About

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Why it made the cut: Users can alternate their note-taking with the included keyboard or via an Apple Pencil.


  • Product dimensions: 11.3 x 9.06 x 0.88 inches
  • Color: Graphite
  • Weight: 1.56 pounds


  • Backlit
  • Foldable
  • Premium keyboard


  • Requires additional battery

Whether you are taking notes in a virtual classroom or board room, the Logitech Slim Folio Pro stands out amongst third-party iPad Pro cases as a practical choice for the best iPad Pro case for note-taking. And if you’re looking for a case with a keyboard that isn’t quite as expensive as an official Apple product, this sells for less than half the price of an Apple Magic Keyboard. Logitech aims to provide a laptop-like experience with the keyboard, ergonomically speaking, so you won’t be creating knots in your fingers that shouldn’t be there when you type. It’s compatible with the Apple Pencil 2, should you prefer to take notes by actually writing them down, but doesn’t have the sturdiest stand if you want to use it for propped-up drawing. Though it requires a lithium-polymer battery, you shouldn’t have to recharge it more than once every three months if you use it for around two hours a day.

Best with pencil holder: Zugu iPad Pro Case

Pencil Me In

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Why it made the cut: A lightweight case that is still a breeze with an Apple Pencil tucked into it.


  • Product dimensions: 11.02 x 7.48 x 0.79 inches
  • Color: Stealth Black
  • Weight: 7.8 ounces


  • Magnetic stand
  • Sleep and wake function
  • 10 stand angles


  • Stand is short

If your trusty Apple Pencil is your primary means of input, you may want to consider buying an iPad Pro case that has the perfect place for your key accessory so you don’t risk misplacing it when you need it. This Zugu Case is the best iPad Pro case with a holder because of its snug Apple Pencil caddy that will hug the writing accessory tight and keep it clean of dust and debris that can easily sneak into bigger pockets. And, with a stand featuring 10 magnetically secure viewing angles, you can use that pencil in a way that feels comfortable to you. You also get the sleek look of leather in a more affordable blend of material that also includes microfiber and polycarbonate. At under half a pound, the Zugu case is light as a feather, easy to clean, and should protect your iPad Pro even if it manages to drop up to 5 feet to the ground. (Still, we wouldn’t suggest that you try that at home.)

Best for artists: OtterBox Defender Series

Deflect the Everyday

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Why it made the cut: Tough construction that you can take on tour—even if that’s just a tour of the house.


  • Product dimensions: 13.5 x 10 x 1.5 inches
  • Color: Black
  • Weight: 1.68 pounds


  • Includes stand
  • Made of strong polycarbonate
  • Has inner shell and outer slipcover


  • Stand only has two angles
  • Doesn’t function with original Apple Pencil

Creatives who are constantly on the go (or who don’t want to work in one dedicated space) can report for duty and trust the drop protection of this OtterBox iPad case, which, with its integrated screen protector, passes military standards. There’s plenty of protection for corners because OtterBox didn’t cut any. At 1.68 pounds, this best iPad pro case for artists is still fairly light and won’t be a pain to pack for a road gig if you’re a visual or performing artist already lugging gear, yet it is rugged enough to keep at bay all the potential nicks and scratches of use sketching in the field or for a DJ or a musician on a stage, etc. One small drawback is that the case only works with the 2nd-gen Apple Pencil, so if you’re a visual artist with the OG version, the Apple Pencil it will have to stay at home. There aren’t as many possible stand angles as some of the other cases listed here, but those that are available in this model are sturdy for drawing or viewing. An inner shell and outer slipcover keep all the muck away from your iPad Pro. 

Best for drawing: tomtoc Portfolio Case

Power Organize Your Creativity

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Why it made the cut: This sporty case not only holds all your artistic accessories, it also stashes away your cables and memory sticks.


  • Product dimensions: 12.99 x 10.63 x 1.97 inches
  • Color: Gray
  • Weight: 1.38 pounds


  • Conceals your cables
  • Water repellent
  • Easy to grip


  • Elastic bands can get stretched out

It’s easy to make a total mess out of your iPad and all its accessories if you don’t have a case with as much space as the tomtoc Portfolio does. As the best iPad Pro case for drawing its zippered, hard-shelled, and water-repellent case has a large pocket for an Apple Pencil (naturally), your new AirPods 3 (for some auditory inspiration), external drives (always back-up those projects), cables, and more. It’s easy to grip thanks to a grooved design, which will come in handy if you’re stuffing it in a larger bag on the go. There’s space for a screen-cleaning cloth (we like the Calyptus Screen Cleaner) to keep your canvas looking crystal clear. You can also throw in some real-world drawing supplies—like mechanical pencils, pens, and brushes—to channel your inner Bob Ross, if you like to have a hybrid of digital and old-fashioned analog tools in your artistic arsenal. Bonus: It’ll fit an iPad with an Apple Magic Keyboard for those who want fortress-level protection and even more increased productivity.

Best accessory for drawing: Elevation Lab DraftTable V2 Kit

Defend Your Art

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Why it made the cut: Four different stand positions promise not to buckle under the weight of your imagination.


  • Product dimensions: 10.83 x 8.27 x 0.79 inches
  • Color: Black
  • Weight: 4.44 pounds


  • Sturdy
  • Four stand positions
  • Includes arm rests


  • Heavier design
  • Not protective of screen

If you are a visual artist or a novice drawer who wants to use your iPad Pro as a stationary sketch pad for ideas big and small, you’ll want the Ipad Pro case accessory for drawing that doesn’t buckle under the sustained pressure of your hands. And while many cases have a built-in plastic pedestal, there’s a benefit to picking a dedicated iPad stand (though you’ll probably also want a true case for protection beyond surface scratches). Sturdy steel makes the Elevation Lab DraftTable V2 kit, which comes with an Apple Pencil holder, and separate armrest for that crucial ergonomic support making this pick a preferred professional standard amongst artists. However, there is at least one potential downside to choosing an iPad holder over a traditional case—it helps keep things stationary but the surface is less stable than laying it on a flat side, and it doesn’t have any benefit if you’re in transit. While you may not be as likely to knock this stand over, there’s no screen or edge protection so, if you drop it, you’re playing damage roulette. This means that it may be best used in one space where your iPad Pro doesn’t travel much, or it accompanies a traditional case of some sort.

What to consider when shopping for the best iPad Pro cases

When trying to determine which of the many options on the market will serve as the best iPad Pro case for your needs, you’ll want to consider whether your Apple tablet is going to be a constant road dog, something that stays at your bedside, or perhaps somewhere in between. No matter what you’re going to do with your iPad Pro, you’ll want to make sure that it’s protected from accidental drops, which are easy to make even if you’ve got a case on the tablet. You’ll want to consider whether you’ll need a keyboard or if you are interested in features such as in-case Apple Pencil charging or antibacterial protection. 

What can happen if I don’t put a case on my iPad Pro?

Even if you’re incredibly careful, a caseless iPad Pro is an expressway to scratches, nicks, and, at the extreme end, a severely cracked screen. Apple’s tablets can feel downright slippery at times and having a case can offer additional friction to keep the iPad in your hands. 

Are there any downsides to using a case?

There can be downsides to using a case. If you buy an iPad Pro case that isn’t made well and is ill-fitting, there can be lots of crevices and gaps that can trap crumbs, dirt, and other debris in between the case and the tablet and damage your expensive device. Fortunately, there are many well-made cases on the market, and some even have antimicrobial properties. In addition, a case will add some weight and width (though this isn’t always a detriment).

Is the Apple Smart Folio effective as an Apple iPad case?

Both the Apple Smart Folio and iPad cases are designed to protect aspects of the tablet, but the Apple Folio is a thin sheath made of polyurethane that primarily serves to signal your iPad to wake up or go to sleep when opened or closed (some cases also perform this function, but it’s not a given). While this iPad smart cover can lessen the likelihood of scratching on the screen or back panel, the iPad Pro cover doesn’t provide the impact protection of a true case.


Q: Can I use iPad Pro without case? 

Yes, you can use an iPad Pro without a case since you aren’t technically required to buy one. But if you don’t put a case on, you run a higher risk of nicking, cracking, or otherwise damaging it in the case of accidental drops or slips. Apple’s iPads are tough, but it’s best to play it safe. .

Q: Which case should I get for iPad Pro?

If you’re wondering which case you should get for iPad Pro, you should know that there isn’t one correct answer; the best iPad Pro case depends on your individual needs. That said, if you’re using the Apple tablet primarily for drawing, consider the Elevation Lab DraftTable Kit. If you want to use it with a keyboard, check out the Apple Magic Keyboard, which is a case and keyboard in one.

Q: Will iPad Pro 12.9 2020 cases fit 2021?

If you are looking at cases that were made last year, it may be good to know that Apple’s iPad Pro 12.9 2020 cases fit the 2021 models. Likewise, if you have an iPad Pro 12.9 from 2020, it will fit with cases that were made later on.

The final word on selecting the best iPad Pro cases

When shopping for the best iPad Pro case to fit your lifestyle, it’s good to know that you don’t have to shell out a lot of money to get decent protection for your Apple tablet. However, if you do want some bells and whistles, like leather or a stand that actually works, there’s a wide market to serve you. After you’ve made sure to look at models that are actually protective and that have the features you want, it then comes down to your personal taste and whether you want a case to be an extension of your personal style. 

Why trust us

Popular Science started writing about technology more than 150 years ago. There was no such thing as “gadget writing” when we published our first issue in 1872, but if there was, our mission to demystify the world of innovation for everyday readers means we would have been all over it. Here in the present, PopSci is fully committed to helping readers navigate the increasingly intimidating array of devices on the market right now.

Our writers and editors have combined decades of experience covering and reviewing consumer electronics. We each have our own obsessive specialties—from high-end audio to video games to cameras and beyond—but when we’re reviewing devices outside of our immediate wheelhouses, we do our best to seek out trustworthy voices and opinions to help guide people to the very best recommendations. We know we don’t know everything, but we’re excited to live through the analysis paralysis that internet shopping can spur so readers don’t have to.

Tamara Palmer Avatar

Tamara Palmer

Contributor, Reviews

Tamara Palmer’s career as a professional DJ—as well as a freelance writer and editor for tech, music, travel and food publications—has been enjoyable for 30 years. She self-publishes California Eating, a website and small-batch print zine, and is also a cookbook ghostwriter, recipe developer, and author of a music book called Country Fried Soul: Adventures in Dirty South Hip-Hop (Backbeat Books, 2005).