Lifedge = lifesaver for iPad1

Those of you who have followed this blog over the years may know that we have had from time to time; problems with Liam's behaviour.
When he is in the "red zone" which is what I call it when he is beyond negotiation, he will bite his hands, try to push or grab me or his father (or staff at school) and he really sets out to break stuff. A lot of stuff. I genuinely lost count of the number of mini-dvd players we have had over the years. I think we replaced 3 or 4 laptop keyboards, a memorable process which involved talking to the lovely Salif or Anjoli in Mumbai and pretending that the "enter" key wasn't working, until they agreed to send me a new one. I eventually switched from Dell to Samsung Netbooks and plug in keyboards from the supermarket; much easier to replace!

Now we have iPads and iPhones, the potential for expensive repairs and replacements has increased. And before you judge me, keep in mind that these devices serve an important social and therapeutic purpose in our lives. And yes, they keep my children happy and content. So employing tough love and making Liam live with the consequences of his vandalism would cost us more than the repairs. He is not "present" in the moment, or aware of what he is doing when he does break them. I have tried shouting "if you break that you will have to use a Nokia phone!" but he doesn't stop. It is really only my investment in the world's best covers that save me from 100 euro repairs.

While I we have had great success with the Otterbox Defender III covers on Grace and my iPad 2s,
I have had a lot of issues with Liam's iPad 1, as most of the old covers do not include polycarbonate screen protection. Which is important when you have a kid who types at 140 words per minute on a glass screen!

Between that, the biting, throwing and picking at the silicone covers, Liam's iPad 1 was on the high risk list, even higher since I spotted a hairline crack. So I was fascinated to read about the Lifedge cover that my friend Val had tested for iPads4autism-ie.

It was strong, it was durable and had a full screen cover with a very difficult to fit rubber sleeve.

"Difficult to fit" meant "difficult to pick off" to me, so blagger that I am, I emailed LifedgeUK myself to ask for a sample.

Which thanks to the lovely Natalie at Lifedge arrived very quickly - in beautiful box

Gorgeous packaging and plenty of instructions

All the pieces, ready to be fitted - and you can see my iPhone through the thick non glare screen. Some people would find this screen too thick as it does take a bit more effort to drag things across the screen; but I have to say it doesn't bother Liam one iota. He types just as quickly through it and manipulates all his Apps very easily.

You just put the iPad inside the white shell case, then using a forceps like tool provided, stretch the hard rubber cover over the edges. It is hard at first, but ok once you get used to it.

The very difficult to remove rubber sleeve. ~It does fit Very Well!

Hand grip thing on the back. The case is actually designed for sailing and action use. It is absolutely water tight and the components are very very durable indeed. It is does mean that you have to remove the cover slightly and peel it back to insert the charge cable. You can't do this last thing at night after a few glasses of wine, so I make Liam bring it up to the office before we go out anywhere, and charge it then.

Because of the difficulty, I had to remove it and put the Otterbox Defender cover back on while I was in Australia, as my husband would not have had time to manage the re-charging exercise on his own.

 Fortunately Liam likes having a lone parent as he gets ALL their attention, and my trip away was incident free.

The home button = absolutely unpickable!

Liam has had this cover for 2 months now and has not been able to twist or bite it. 
The cover stays on!

And it fits perfectly into the chat bag for mobility

The plusses are all obvious, Liam can't get it out of the case and the case is really really tough - so it protects the iPad during his worst meltdowns. Minuses are that I have to always make sure it is fully charged and be sure to get to it before he does to firmly fit the cover again.

The water-tight seal means there is no access to the headphone jack either, but Liam refuses to wear headphones with his iPad anyway so that has not been an issue.

This cover is specifically made for iPad 1 - and since there have been 3 further models, there is a good chance that some nice person might be looking to offload their original iPad.
My son, like so many special needs kids could not give a hoot about front facing cameras or retina display. They can get great value out of the iPad 1, so please, if you have an iPad1 and are hankering after the new one, consider donating it to someone with autism or special needs. 

Leave a comment or email me on so I can connect you with a family in need.
Thanks to Lifedge, it can be well protected!

At €119, these covers are not cheap! but since repairs run at a minimum of €100, plus the anxiety of losing access to the device while it is in the workshop, this is a smart investment for a family living with special needs.

My Boy using his Lifedge protected iPad to watch Youtube.

An impressive candidate for Movember don't you think?

Go to LifedgeUk to order direct. There is a choice of colours, but as you know, Liam really does like pink!

*Updated 5/5 to include Liam


Katy said…
Looks fab not to far from the magic number of mobiles for Jimmy's I pad think I'll go for one of these
Brilliant. We need something drool-resistant that they can't peel off. Sounds perfect. We don't use headphones either and have gotten into a routine with a locked cabinet for charging. :) Great blog, as always.
Lori Holbrook said…
Very cool! Always nice to hear about more cases that the CHAT Bag does fit over! Great job on your blog:)
This looks like the case that I have been looking for! I can't currently leave my daughter alone with the iPad for fear that the current cover will be removed, chewed and the iPad swept onto the floor! This looks much better..
jazzygal said…
Great Review! So glad that you got a cover that works so well....and thanks for the mention :-)

xx Jazzy
Anonymous said…
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