Waterproof, dirtproof, snowproof, slim, durable. Need I say more?
Notes: As anyone who knows me can attest, I get up to some odd adventures and can be rough on equipment, which is why I tend towards what I would call adventure proof ( not to say idiot proof) equipment. O.K. I also may not have enough sense to get out of the rain, monsoon, or do something stupid on or near water. The LIFEPROOF iPhone case relieves me of the nagging thought about what equipment I may be putting at risk at least in terms of my phone and whther it will survive what I just decided was a good idea and or fun. I have also reviewed the LIFEPROOF NUUD iPad Case and the iPad Case Strap Set all of which got high marks for being durable,quality items that stood up to all outr tests.
Appearance: Nice slim design, cut away skeletonized look to the entire case. Clear optical glass cover over camera. A rather stylish minimalist look and feel rather than the chunky overkill of some of the other cases out there, and also doesn’t stick to everything like some of those more rubberized or rubber covered cases that drag everything else out of your pocket once you get the phone loose . Buttons are easy to find and responsive, good quality plastic screen cover to protect the screen but still enjoy your phone it in all its glory
First Impression: Decently made with silicone gasketing similar to what you find in cars, airplane engines, and other mission critical applications. Cover/shield is a press on grey smoked flexible polypropelene plastic that will not show scratches easily,with notches/cutouts for controls.Microphones and speakers are not blocked by case and the headphone jack has a adapter that screws into the case to maintain waterproof integtrity
Directions and Instructions: While a bit of a challenge to install, I love their obsessive thoroughness to make sure you get it right. First they test EACH case at the factory for waterproofness,then they make you test yourself and the case to make sure you can do it right. They provide very detailed instructions on line on how to assemble the case (minus your iPhone) than submerge it in your bathtub (or similar container of water at depth) to make sure you can snap it together without it leaking. Assuming you do this correctly, then you put your iPhone in the case and you are ready to go ! I will point out thought that to register the case for the full one year warranty you must provide the serial numbers from both the front and back of the case SO DO THIS FIRST before you put your case together !
Testing: While we haven’t tasted the case to failure point, we are quite impressed with it so far. Just like the iPad case we tested earlier, we have dropped it into water, washed it with cheap gin when it got dirty and strolled around with it in the rain, mud and carried it into some fairly ugly environments with no ill effects to either the case or the iPhone itself. This case is head and shoulders above any other case for durability, water and spill protection and overall durability and protection. Cover has built in stand with two settings, landscape picture frame type display and much lower typing stand which props up the iPad slightly for typing on screen. Both work well and more stable that other stands that came with cases we have tried. It puts many other cases to shame. Many cases are good for general, light duty use, but for environments where it MAY – read probably sooner of later – get wet, dirty or meet with some misadventure) this is one case to rely on. Remember iPhones have a indicator that turns pink if they get wet and Apple has little sympathy. First time you drop a phone into a toilet, take the wrong amusement ride or get soaked somewhere with a non waterproof case you are done. The case allows you to carry on with life with minimal worries as long as you follow maintenance and care directions. Slim design makes it easy to carry and store without sacrificing protection unlike some of the bulkier cases out there.
Bitch List: Maybe a little more rubber like coating to make me feel better about drops. This case seems almost naked compared to my other cases. This is a very minor fault given the overall quality and design of the case and probably more just my perception than anything else.
Other: They have a lot of other equipment and options for the case such as various mounts for bicycles, arms, a life ring for aquatic environments ( read boating and dropping it over the side), and other items like ruggedized solar chargers and battery packs.
Final Thoughts: If you want the best and most protective case out there that is still reasonably thin and lightweight this is IT. While expensive compared to other cases you get what you pay for and more. One of the problems with the iPhone is that they can get ruined so easily. They just aren’t that durable compared to some of the ruggedized phones out there. With this case you can carry your iPhone almost anywhere you would go with one of those phones in any conditions – rain, snow dust, bars, parties, whatever and still get all the functionality and cool factor that was the reason you got an iPhone in the first case. The protection that a iPhone sacrificed for style over those ruggedized bricks is more than met by this slim but durable case. The peace of mind and utility it brings you is well with the cost. Protective cases for your gear are like parachutes – don’t buy cheap ones- they may work most of the time, but most isn’t good enough.