I am hard on my phones. Really, really hard. Honestly, it is a miracle my iPhone is unscathed; by 4 months into owning my Droid it had gone down the stairs twice and out of my pocket multiple times. So far the iPhone has been lucky, but every time I slip it in my SPIbelt for a run or fiddle with it while walking the dog, I feel like I am tempting the smartphone destruction gods. So, as soon as Case-Mate’s Phantom arrived, fresh from Judie and Dan at CES, I slapped it on my phone. (Literally — I received it at 1 pm today and my phone was encased by 1:05 pm!)
A full review will be coming once I have some time to get comfortable with it, but here are my first impressions.
My first thought was “Whoa, talk about beefy.” It is a big, heavy case even without the iPhone inside. However, when the phone is installed the weight feels nicely balanced. You really don’t notice it after a moment or two. The same goes for the aggressively protective border around the screen; normally I have a hard time adjusting my fingers when a case comes up far over the edge, but surprisingly they are thin enough to not interfere with typing, even out to the P and Q letters. Unfortunately, it is thick. There’s no way around that, and the design does try to minimize it. But it’s the trade-off for a thicker case. Overall, the usual drawbacks to a “tough” case are addressed really well here, and it shows how much work Case-Mate put in the design.
Speaking of design, the overall style here is really nice. The navy with light blue accents softens the look, plus the sloped sides and back make it look slimmer. I showed it off around my office and it had been a big hit! Even people who are not “rugged” case types were impressed and praised the colors and style. It feels nice to hold, the colors pop, and the mix of textures gives it grip and variety.
Now, I have had this case for all of an hour and a half. The honeymoon period has just begun, but so far it is above and beyond my expectations of a tough case. I won’t be dropping my phone down the stairs to test it, but at least when destructo-dog and his tail of doom come wagging by, I won’t dive for my phone in a cold sweat!
Check back soon for a full review, and in the meantime, you can check out the Phantom on Case-Mate’s website.