To say that I have an opinion when it comes to cases on phones would be an understatement. I have written many posts about using my iPhone the way it came straight out of the box and how my frustrations with cases only add to my prevention of ever wanting to use them.
This most significant reason is that it takes away from the device I paid a premium to own. Wrapping a beautiful stainless-steel or aluminum gadget with a thick piece of silicone or plastic seems wrong. Especially with specific phone designs that require you to use certain gestures, like swiping from the bottom or side to side, and a case can restrict or prevent that from happening smoothly.
This last weekend we had family come visit from out of state to give us a TON of baby needs. My sister-in-law and brother-in-law are done having kids, so they brought and gave us all of their baby gadgets that they no longer needed.
With our baby on the way, I have been, obviously, more observant of how parents deal with their kids, whether it be a child throwing a fit or just doing something you don’t want them to do.
There are many techniques in distracting, calming, or helping a frustrated and badly tempered child. And though it isn’t ideal, with a miniature television in our pocket, many parents just hand their phones to their kids to distract them for a while.
As of right now, there are a lot of things that my wife and I try and say we would never do. Handing a phone playing YouTube has been one of those things. But we also live in the real world and have yet to experience every instance of a bored child, and us needing just 5–10 minutes of quiet time — I can see the writing on the wall already.
Regardless, the mere fact that I am about to have a child makes me think about my almost $1000 pocket computer’s safety. Since I pay for AppleCare+, I am not solely concerned that it can break or damage since I can get it repaired. What I am more concerned about is the pain in the ass it is to get it fixed.
Over the years, I have noticed that with Apple’s Repair Service, it is becoming more of a hassle to get your phone repaired or replaced. With all the store’s shut down right now, including my “local” one over 30 minutes away, you are only left with sending your iPhone in if you want to get it fixed.
Apple does offer Rapid Replacement options for those on AppleCare+, where they send you a replacement (refurbished) iPhone requiring you to provide a deposit of the iPhone’s full price and send back the broken phone after you are done transferring all of your data.
Even with the Rapid Replacement option, it could take 3–4 days before you finally have your new, or refurbished, iPhone. If your iPhone was damaged beyond being able to use it, like say it cracked the screen so bad it was unusable; then three days could be a lifetime waiting to have a working phone again.
The convenience factor alone is what is pushing me towards using a case again. That, and the fact that I will have a tiny human running around soon who could directly or indirectly destroy my expensive gadget fairly quickly after watching many close calls with friends and family.
Which leads me to what case I should get? As a fan of Apple, I lean towards their cases since I know that they will fit the phone perfectly and will provide a premium in quality that others may not. I also don’t want to lose the MagSafe capability, and after watching this video by MobileReviewsEh, the cheaper “knockoff” versions that are implementing MagSafe are not that great yet.
Apple’s leather cases have also been very high quality. I used to use the leather cases exclusively when I had a case on my phone all the time. The feel of the leather cases have always been good in the hand, and, as a bonus, they age well, especially the Saddle Brown color that patinas nicely overtime.
Out of all of Apple’s leather case options, though, I couldn’t find one that I loved for my blue iPhone 12. The Black and Saddle brown are always good looking, and I was even leaning towards the California Poppy color to give my phone a bit more pizazz but decided not to because I felt these colors would clash with my MagSafe wallet.
The Saddle Brown color of my wallet, I feel, didn’t give me the contrast I wanted in the leather case options. The best looking was probably the California Poppy, but I wasn’t brave enough to go with that color mashup.
Instead, I started to look at the Silicone case options. I originally bought the White case, but it was immediately taken from me and used on my wife’s iPhone after I had the same conversation above with her. I enjoyed the color mixing with the blue iPhone, white case, and brown wallet but, since I already tried that, I wanted to see if there were another color I would like.
That is when I saw the Deep Navy colored Silicone Case. Compared to the Baltic Blue leather case, the Deep Navy I felt provided a better contrast to the phone color, mostly the color coming through the Camera square since the rest of the phone is covered. The Baltic Blue was too light, and I honestly think it looks terrible with the Saddle Brown wallet.
The Deep Navy Silicone Case was the one that I ultimately decided to try out since it was the one I felt gave my blue iPhone 12 a little extra in style with the contrasting blues. It also looks great with the Saddle Brown MagSafe Wallet — that I still really like and use every time I leave the house.
Also, due to my blue preference in my accessories and other gadgets lately, it made sense that I was drawn towards another blue product. The blue colored case also complements my headphones, watch strap, and backpack, providing a new variant of blue into the mix.
The biggest let down in choosing the Apple Silicone case is that you are only saving $10 by not selecting a Leather case instead. The fact that Apple charges $50 for this case is a bit ridiculous. Don’t get me wrong, the inside microfiber lining, MagSafe capabilities, and premium soft-touch silicone casing do all feel premium.
But when comparing silicone to leather, you wonder how much the leather offsets the price difference, maybe it only costs an additional $10 to wrap it in leather versus silicone, but a part of me feels like I am getting ripped off. This price difference alone had me struggling to get the leather case because I thought it would be a better overall value in price.
Either way, I am surprisingly pleased with the case on my iPhone. It was a of a bit of a challenge to get here but overall I am starting to get over the bulkiness of it. The soft yet grippy-ness of the Silicone Case is really nice and even with the bottom of the phone covered, I still feel like I can swipe up to unlock my phone just fine. The trick is that you don’t need to come from the bottom of your phone, anywhere towards the bottom and swiping up will do.
The cutouts on the bottom for the speaker, microphone and lightening port are all fine and the buttons for the home and volume controls are clicky and responsive. I do like the subtle black Apple logo on the back and though the design of the camera-bump on the iPhones are a bit much, having the color standout through the case is pretty cool looking.
There are a few negatives with having the Apple Silicone case though. These I feel have always been criticisms of mine for these cases but when pulling my phone out of my pocket now, it isn’t as smooth since the friction of a case against my clothe pocket is different from just smooth aluminum. I also get annoyed when I pull my phone out of my jeans or sweats pocket and find the case and edges covered in lint.
The peace of mind of having the case, I think, will keep me from taking it off, though. I still have many months, even a year, before my little one starts wanting to use or grab the phone. But warming up to the idea now to have the case, I think, will make it so I am use to my phone being this way when the time comes.
So, despite all my disregard and reluctance, I am back using a case again full time. Something I haven’t done since, I think, the iPhone 5 when I would try and keep my phone as pristine as possible to sell it at a high price to buy the new version iPhone every two years. Now I am doing it to prevent the headache of dealing with a broken phone or the stress of a mini human crushing it. But I will admit the case-life isn’t that bad so far.