I love the ability to protect my phone. I’ve reviewed plenty of cases, but whenever someone asks me “Greg, what case do you use daily for your iPhone” I tell them, Lifeproof. At least I have on all of my previous phones.
So after five months of waiting I finally received the Lifeproof Nuüd for the iPhone 6+, and I’m completely underwhelmed.
Now, if you follow Lifeproof on Twitter, you will know their mentions the past few months were all about “well, where is the 6+ version?” It seemed as if the bigger iPhone was receiving no love from case makers. A friend of mine came over and had his iPhone 6 in a Lifeproof, and to be quite honest, I hated him for about 5 minutes. The case looked sleek, it protected his entire phone, so even if I’d dropped it on the floor he probably wouldn’t have had a concern. And there I was, stuck with using a regular case.
So I received an email from Lifeproof saying those of us who asked to get notifications for the 6+ FINALLY had the chance to order our LifeProof Nuüd and get two-day shipping. Practicing a bit of patience, I decided to wait until the first few versions came out earlier in March before getting mine. So Monday when I ripped opening the FedEx box containing my Nuüd Lifeproof, I was happy as a clam.
Everything about the LifeProof Nuüd case was perfect. It matched my space grey iPhone 6 Plus, keeping the form factor of the phone weight wise although adding a bit of size at the ends. I can deal with that, right? Yep. I didn’t even bother doing the water test because to be quite honest, Lifeproof tests their products individually anyway, and if anything went wrong, I would be the first to call them.
In goes the phone into the case …
I went to the gym with this case Monday evening, using my Bluetooth headphones because I don’t bother with cords in the gym (even though Lifeproof does include an adapter for cords), and I enjoyed the weight in my hands. The volume buttons, as well as the power button on the side were a bit stiff, which I assume will loosen up after frequent use. I was able to unlock my phone through touch ID with no problem, even though the case has film over the sensor, which it didn’t on the 5+ version I had back in 2014. The more recent 5+ models now do as well, so I assume things have changed thanks to their acquisition from Otterbox.
That being said.. thins took a turn for the worst from there.
At the end of my day I went to charge my phone, and literally cursed to high heavens. MY CORD DOESN’T WORK? WHAT? Now, I don’t know about you guys, but I hate the Apple manufactured cords. I have a box full of short, frayed white cords that I never throw away because I hope they’ll eventually have a purpose. I’ve tied knots in some attempting to create a mythical rebirth for the cable. I’ve plugged them into third-party USB hubs, even gone to lengths of taping them. At $19 those things aren’t cheap, but I got sick of buying them and went with sturdier third-party cables.
Let’s take the Verizon Wireless 6 foot lightning cord for example. It doesn’t work with the Lifeproof because the bottom is too wide. This is the cord I use at home because when I’m in the living room, Apple’s cord is too short for my liking. You’d think Apple would come out with a longer cord, but they haven’t. So for Lifeproof to make their newer cases incompatible with virtually EVERY single 3rd party lightning cable makes this case worthless to me. Especially when the 5S model of the case has a wider slot for 3rd party cables.
Exactly what were they thinking?
I don’t know, but until they have a meeting with their new bosses at Otterbox, I’ll be taking my talents (and my phone) to another brand. The “waterproof, drop-proof” market is a lucrative one, but with other brands like… Otterbox’s own waterproof case, or the Catalyst Waterproof Case, down to the Incipio Atlas that all allow 3rd party cables, it’s really hard to give Lifeproof a good review if I can’t charge my phone with the case on it.
If you think you might still be interested in the LifeProof Nuüd for the iPhone 6+, you can purchase it in the two available colors of Black or White directly from Lifeproof’s site for $99.
Source: Personal Purchase
What I Like: Sleek; waterproof, dirtproof, and dropproof
What Needs Improvement: Hole for charger ports widens up to accept 3rd party cables (really!); more colors