Saturday, 19 June 2010

On the (iPhone) Case

I surrender. Last night iPhone number 6 (at least - to be honest, I've lost count) slid off a bar onto a hard, stone floor and has had the white screen of LCD death ever since so, another insurance claim later I'm giving in and finally getting an iPhone case for the replacement. I've had iPhones for years now but have always found cases were either clunky, awkward, inconvenient or just plain ugly.

When I first switched to Apple a few years ago, I decided to buy a couple of iPhone skins just to distinguish the ubiquitous casing so that mine was easier to spot. I bought a couple of city design skins by pixel art collective, eBoy; these are basically just giant hard wearing stickers for the back of your phone that help prevent scratching and have a little hole for the camera lense. They are transferable and, although I lost the London one along with my first ever iPhone which some bastard stole out of my pocket at the backstage bar on day one of that year's Reading Festival (*sob*), the New York one has seen me through five (or more) handsets since then and has drawn numerous admiring glances and comments from total strangers. You can get the sold out New York design from the site (check out this fabboombox one too) and can buy other city designs from the eBoy store, here, but maybe they'd be better stuck onto a hard cover rather than onto the actual phone.

So. While I wait for my new handset I've taken another look at what kind of cases are available now. Special mentions to Cath Kidston for her cheery, retro designs and GreyMobiles for their twinkly pink crystal cover beloved of my Essex chums, but my favourite by far is the super cool American brand Incase. Their simple, stylish designs and various designer collaborations including Gareth Pugh and the Dutch artist, Parra, are a far cry from the dreary IT guy look (NB. Paul Smith, don't think adding your signature stripes to a bad design makes things any better) and, pleasingly, there's not a belt loop in sight. I can't decide between the high tech chic of the perforated metal snap cases, the summer fun of the brightly coveredfluro slider covers or the aching cool of the chrome finishes, although I suspect the inevitable fingerprints on those would drive me MAD. UK stockists include Flatspot and the Apple Storealthough eBay may be cheaper and also carries more from the full US range but, as ever, watch out for those Hong Kong fakes.

Pictures, from top: Incase fluro slider, Incase chrome covers, Incase perforated metal covers, a couple of Cath Kidston cases, eBoy New York iPhone skin

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