If you are looking for a waterproof case for your iPhone, but don’t want bulky scuba gear attached to your phone, then you are looking for LifeProof. LifeProof cases are designed for life. We all have those times when we are around the pool, walking in the rain or needing to grab an important phone call while in the shower when we wish we had a waterproof case. Waterproofing has traditionally involved a bulky, unattractive case that screamed security, but also shouted UGLY. So ugly and bulky that it wasn’t going to be used unless you planned ahead, which doesn’t help much when your phone falls in the toilet!
With family in mind, let me start by saying this case is not very thick. It is not the case you need if you plan to hand it over to a young toddler, as biting might ruin it. If you have a toddler who is more interested in throwing things in the toilet or sink than chewing on them, keep reading. I received a limited edition clear case for iPhone 4/4s to review, and have tested it in many situations you might encounter in daily life.
When you get the case, start by following the instructions provided by LifeProof precisely. Not only will this save your phone, but it will save your warranty as well.
The case is easy to install, and fits snugly without adding much weight or bulk to the phone. The camera and flash are not affected due to a lens built in for them, and all speakers and microphones have specially designed membranes to pass sound out of the case. You have to touch slightly harder to use the touch screen, but all touches and drags are registered as normal, even with water on the screen.
I used the case underwater in the sink, in the shower, outside in the sleet/snow, even held it in my wet hands while washing dishes. The case did not leak in any of these situations. I was surprised to find that not only did touches register even with water on the screen, but the sound was not affected by the case being in water either. All buttons worked normally, though it is worth noting that the silence toggle is reversed when the case is on (push toward the back of the case to turn to loud, toward the front for silent).
Two issues of inconvenience – the headphone port is not very wide, so only thin headphones will work without an adapter (the adapter also maintains the waterproof seal, so you can use waterproof headphones and go for a swim!), and the charging port cover only opens 90 degrees. This means you have limited space to get the plug in the phone. While I did not have an issue with this, I have family with LifeProof who only use the case when at the beach because of this. A dock extender is available from LifeProof, but it will set you back $30. While stores such as amazon have them much cheaper, most of the off brand do not extend far enough to fit the LifeProof.
This is definitely not the toughest case I have owned, in regard to impact resistance and feel, but what other case is both waterproof AND decent looking? They even come in a wide array of colors! Issues aside, the case is great and offers top of the line protection with a fraction of the bulk that most competitors add. With all the construction, with saw dust, weather, plumbing and other hazards, my husband will be keeping this case on his phone from now on.
I highly recommend LifeProof cases now that I have tried one out. I expected the thin form to mean less protection, and I was wrong. If you are on the fence, and you want something waterproof to use more than a couple of times, go get a LifeProof. Make sure to follow all instructions exactly when you receive the case to ensure you do everything to keep your phone safe. LifeProof is not responsible for damage to your phone, and saving a minute on case installation is not worth killing your device.
LifeProof is available for iPhone 4/4s, iPhone 5, iPad Gen 2/3/4 and iPod Touch Gen 4. The LifeProof case for Samsung Galaxy S III is on its way and will be available soon. Currently there are limited edition cases available for the iPhone 4/4s including the Clear Back cases and the Tactical Colors.
Read more specifications and testing done by LifeProof here.
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Family Centsability was not monetarily compensated for this post. A product sample was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.