After purchasing a bright shiny phone, I don’t leave it naked too long. I receive as much pleasure from purchasing the case as I do from purchase of the phone. In my opinion, the case needs to protect the phone and maintain all the button functions; if it can add to the coolness of the phone, the case is a winner. Otter Box has just released a case for the BlackBerry Curve that does all three.
I was sent the Impact Series for the Blackberry Curve. Opening the package didn’t require a chain saw, and the plastic shell case opened easily with fingertips. Usually I dread opening the blister packs because it requires a sharp knife or scissors, some cursing and finally a band-aid at some point.
The Impact Series has 2 layers of protection. A silicone case that wraps around the BlackBerry Curve to absorb impact, and then a clear plastic screen that protects the screen itself. The case only adds a bit to the dimension of the Curve. With the BlackBerry Curve in the case, the phone is 4.32 x 2.64 x .85 inches. The case does add some weight, about 3 ounces to the Curve’s 4.06 ounces.
The first impression you get when you take the case out of the packaging is of its thickness. I have had cheap silicone cases before, and have found that you certainly get what you pay for. Here is a side-by-side comparison of an inexpensive silicone case vs. the Otter Box Case. The case on the left is an inexpensive silicone case for my Verizon XV6900. Notice the detail in the OtterBox Impact case. You can see the checkered molding on the back of the case on the Otterbox and the smooth finish on the inexpensive case.
The case is specially formed to have thicker areas near the top and bottom where you might drop the phone. All the cutouts fit perfectly, and they have even take the extra detail by molding the buttons with the symbols from the BlackBerry.
Placing the PVC membrane takes a little time and care in order to not leave any bubbles or finger prints under the membrane. OtterBox provides a a cleaning cloth for use before and after installing the screen cover. One thing I found that works well is to work from the one direction to the other, using a pencil or rule, and sliding it down the screen to smooth out wrinkles as you go. Sliding the BlackBerry into the Curve is really easy, just make sure you know which is the top and which is the bottom.
All the buttons work great in the case. Because the silicone is thick, the buttons need to be pushed a little harder than without a case, but the protection is well worth it. If you like using the BlackBerry holster with your phone, the case is too thick to fit in the holster. So, you will have to decide if a protected phone is worth more to you then the convenience of a holster.
I really like the protection that Otter Box’s Impact provide for my phones. They add a little bulk, but its a small price to pay for instead of scratching and scarring your new precious toy. I never really liked the amount of lint that the silicone cases seem to attract in my pocket and bag, and I have yet to find a silicone case that doesn’t get dirty after sitting in my pocket. The Otter Box doesn’t seem to attract as much dirt as other silicone cases. I think the small amount of lint for the protection is worth it..
The OtterBox Impact Case is available directly from the OtterBox.
MSRP: $ 19.95
What I Like: Great Protection for BlackBerry Curve, thick silicone, easy open package, buttons and cutouts work perfectly
What Needs Improvement: If OtterBox could design it to fit in the holster