As you’ll see in the coming weeks, the flood of cases for Apple’s latest baby will be making an appearance here on Gadgetsteria. When Apple announced the phone, our PR contacts and case manufacturers didn’t hesitate hitting us up with what they had to offer. And since we here at GS are prone to featuring any and all accessories we’re given the chance to man-handle, we took them up on their offers.
One particular iOS device accessory manufacturer we stumbled upon back in January at CES 2012 is X-Doria. We were quite impressed with what we saw out of their booth and couldn’t wait to get our hands on their iPhone 4S collection. Over the course of the year, we’ve been given a chance to review a few items, and after some mixed reviews we now have a chance to start over with the company as they release their new line of iPhone 5 cases.
Something X-Doria has going for them is creativity and originality. Yes, there are a few case manufacturers out there that make some unique items that will only really appeal to a small market, but something I will say X-Doria does well is bridging the gap between the unique cases and the stylish everyday cases. Some will be out there and won’t appeal to everyone, but overall, they take the best of both worlds and create pretty much something for everyone. With the release of the iPhone 5, 11 cases made their way out of the X-Doria camp, and we were given the chance to sample 4 of what they had to offer. So strap your reading shoes on (or glasses if you are one of our respected older fans) and prepare to be dazzled, or at least bored for the next few minutes…
Out of all the cases I have used from X-Doria, this is by far my favorite. It’s slim and perfectly hugs the iPhone 5. A glossy polycarbonate case combines with a perforated fabric on the rear to create a slim case that offers some grip without sacrificing a slim physique. With every case I’ve used with any iPhone, covering up the Apple logo and the rear of the phone is something I hate. The Dash combines protection but also gives you a nice window along the center of the case giving you view of the logo.
The case works very well with a screen protector, and gives the side of your phone a slick glossy look. The fabric on the rear of the case somewhat feels like a cheap basketball. I’m not saying it feels cheap, but that’s the only comparison I can think of. The case does offer decent protection against scrapes, scuffs and even an impact. Coming in at $34.99, it is on the expensive side, but for a slim case that isn’t too crazy, yet offers a bit of style, I can recommend it. You can find a lot of other cases that provide the same level of protection at a lesser price, but the Dash is definitely one of the nicer cases I’ve used. The Dash comes in 5 different colors.
I did, however, run into an issue that I want to make known, when using the iPhone, I find it resting on my pinky often as I type and swipe through the screen. The bottom of this case does scratch and poke more so than anything else I’ve used. I asked my wife to test my hold of the phone out, and she noticed it as well. It could of been my particular unit, but I do think an extra buffer on this would make extensive use bearable. All ports and buttons are easily accessible when using this case, so no worries there!
The Venue is probably my second favorite out of my test units. The hard glossy polycarbonate back combined with a grippy soft protective rubber makes this case awesome for people that love both. I have talked to a lot of people over the years, and it’s a toss up for the preference of material used for their cases. The Venue does a great job at keeping that glossy look, but providing small V shaped rubber lines on the bottom half of the case. The soft rubber is even covering the inside of the case, giving a second layer of protection. I found this case a little more forgiving with my nerves as I was sliding the phone in and out of the case.
With the sensitive skin on the iPhone 5, plopping it into plastic cases scares the bollocks out of me. Knowing there is a soft material hugging my phone puts those nerves at ease. This case is definitely thicker than the other cases I was sent, but not by much, surprisingly, considering the dual material build. I purposely gave my iPhone some hell when this case was on the phone and I am pleased with the level of protection it had. I think the $34.99 price tag on this phone is a little bit more rewarding than the Dash, seeing as how this case gives me more of a peace of mind than the Dash did. You have the option of 6 different colors. But do remember, if you like how thin the iPhone 5 is, you’ll notice a bulk up when this case is being worn.
The volume buttons, ports and Mute button are accessible with the greatest of ease, but I did find some issue getting the sleep/wake button to press. You’ll notice a slit shift in elevation between the hard material and the rubber(which covers the button in question) making it somewhat difficult to press. This wasn’t a huge issue, but I noticed it every time I went to put the iPhone to sleep.
I like my cases to be pleasing on the eyes. I don’t like a lot of flair, and I really don’t like much noise bouncing off the outside of the phone. Something as busy as the Engage Form is definitely not my style. But I thought I would give it a shot for a couple of days and see how it did. I will say, by itself, I don’t find it attractive, but when it was one my phone it did look a little bit better. The case is a lightweight polycarbonate shell that offers decent protection against scratches and scuffs. I wouldn’t go throwing my iPhone around while in this case as it does feel somewhat cheap. The Engage Form for the iPhone 4S was almost the same case, featuring a woven rubber finish. I do prefer this material over that rubber style, but this is a bit too flashy for me.
A note to mention, the bottom of this case is almost completely open, so the bottom of your iPhone will be prone to more than a full body case. It also doesn’t have raised edges to keep the screen of your device protected. The woven design comes in 6 colors, and might be great for someone looking for a unique design and adequate scratch protection. For $29.99, it is decently priced, and with the amount of colors, especially black, this could be a great case for many of you out there. Each port and button is easily accessible with this case on the iPhone.
Last but certainly not least is the X-Doria Cubit. This extremely unique case is once again made from the same polycarbonate material as the rest of the X-Doria family, and unlike the Engage Form, will protect against impact as well as scratches. I found this case to be sturdier than some other cases, all while keeping a slim farm. For what this case has on the back, I was surprised at how thin it actually was. As you can see from the picture, you have little cut-outs that cover the back of the case, and you are given two different colors of squares that will fit into each of these cut-outs. Before putting the case on your phone, just come up with any design you’d like, or fill them all up and then just plop the case onto your phone. As you can see, I gave mine a neat little Tetris feel. I will say the white case looked great on the black iPhone.
Priced at $29.99 and shipping in 3 different colors, if you want something somewhat crazy, yet still thin, the Cubit is going to be one of the best options out there. The soft silicone squares give you a nice grip to the case, and actually add somewhat of a buffer between the ground and your precious phone. Once again we have a case that is screen protector friendly, as this one doesn’t extend past the side of the phone. This case won’t cover the entire bottom of the iPhone just like the rest of the X-Doria family. As with all of the other cases, all buttons and ports are easily accessible.
X-Doria does have some really nice cases in their arsenal. Style and adequate protection are their priority with these cases. If you aren’t planning on sky-diving or mountain biking, and want a case that stands out but is still slim and unique, X-Doria has you covered. I highly recommend checking out their website and seeing some of the other options they have. Their Bump and Scene cases look very nice, not to forget their Shield case that offers 100% protection on all sides of the iPhone.
X-Doria has some creativity behind their work. Some of their iPad accessories are actually quite impressive. We were able to receive a demo of some of them at CES, along with seeing every case they had to offer. After getting a nice test on 4 of their newly released and updated cases, I’ll have to admit that X-Doria has a nice rung on the ladder of the case world. Head on over to their website and check out all they have to offer!
Thanks to Max Borges Agency and X-Doria for all the samples!