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How to make anything Smart Cover compatible

Apple's Smart Cover is great, but even though it could potentially be used on other devices, it's dependent on a series of magnets along the side in order to attach to the device. This mod allows you to add those magnets to any device where it would make sense to do so, meaning a device that has the right dimensions for using one and a clean side where you can glue some magnets without getting in the way of buttons.

The most obvious such use would be to add magnets to the iPad 1, but in this guide I'm adding them to a iPad mini-sized Bluetooth keyboard. The method is the same.


  • Small magnets (look for 5x1mm magnets on eBay)
  • A mini pack of sugru
  • Super glue, preferably with a brush
  • Olive oil (optional)
  • Plastic wrap (optional)
  • A Smart Cover (obviously)

Step 1

Magnets positioned to attach smart cover

Lay out the magnets on the Smart Cover and let them align themselves as they see fit. Use as many magnets as you can fit in there without them interfering with one another.

Next, align the Smart Cover on the device the way you want it to sit when it's all done. Move the hinge around and practice how it would need to be glued to the side to fit.

Once you're comfortable with how it needs to go on, add glue to the side of the device where the magnets need to go. Quickly align the Smart Cover and press the magnetic part against the side so that the attached magnets get glued in place. Hold it like there for a few minutes.

Step 2

Sugrued magnets on keyboard

If you were successful, you should end up with the magnets detaching from the Smart Cover and sticking behind in the glue when you remove the cover. If some magnets come with the cover, you can redo the glueing process for those, or glue them on manually if you know where they need to go.

Step 3

Strip of Sugru on top of magnets

Apply a strip of Sugru on top of the magnets and shape them into a rough strip covering the magnets.

Optional: Once you have a rough shape, apply olive oil on the sugru, and then add plastic wrap over it. Attach the Smart Cover on top of the plastic wrap and squeeze it down to shape the sugru to fit it perfectly, and to make sure the Smart Cover alignment is still good. Remove the cover and the plastic foil, and shave off any excess sugru from the 'squeezing process' with a sharp blade.

Step 4

Sugru applied over the top of the magnets

Once cured, you should end up with a sugru spine full of Smart Cover-loving magnets!