Ah, the quandry of cases. Designers keep making phones and tablets thinner and lighter, and it sometimes seems that case manufacturers seek to make up for this by making cases stiffer, heavier, and bulkier. With my currently active phone, I started out without a case. It was the first phone I didn’t immediately entomb in plastic, silicone or leather, and I have enjoyed using cases while testing and then going back to commando mode. Recently, I’ve been testing the Urban Armor Aviator case. I was sent one for my iPhone 5s.
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The Urban Armor cases are named by the color/pattern of each case. The Aviator is a dark grey with black interior and edges. The Outland is Orange with black, etc.
The case has a black interior honeycombed impact-absorbing layer which covers the edges and much of the back, and a harder, less flexible polymer that gives shape to the cushiony interior and adds a bit of structure to the outer back face as well. The polymer is slightly smooth, but there’s enough of a tooth where you don’t feel like it’ll slip out of your hand. There’s always a corner or edge of the inner material to give your grip more bite, too.
There are a million shells that look much like this on the market, but UAG’s model has passed the MIL STD 810G 516.6 standard for drop-tests. I’m not sure what that is, but I’ll say whatever is good for the military is good for my day to day use! The volume buttons and on-off switch are completely covered with the same material as the cushy insides, and the speakers, ports and ringer-silence switch are open for easy access. The grippy corners means that the unit doesn’t slide across a car seat, or slip out of my shirt pocket easily.
Like I mentioned in the Rogue Folio review, the branding is a bit bold (unless your name is Ursula Andrea Gastonbury), but it’s only on one place on this case. – dead center on the back. It’s stylized enough to look like a design, but it’s there, nonetheless. I’ve never been accused of being subtile, but it’s a little splashy for me.
Urban Armor Gear has cases for just about every device currently on the market. There are several styles to choose from, and a good mix of colors in most categories.
During the time I have used it, I found it light, and easy to use with all peripherials that I normally use for my iPhone. I’m currently shopping for a DSL lens adapter case for it, but this one is great for day-to-day use. I give it 5 out of 5 stars. Just call me Ulysses Abercrombie Goldfinch.