Otterbox Commuter for iPhone 4 offers style without bulk
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Otterbox Commuter for iPhone 4 offers style without bulk


By 'Doctor Dave' Greenbaum

iPhone cases seem to come in two different varieties: fashionable lightweights that look nice but provide poor protection and larger cases that add protection along with bulk. Personally, I prefer
function over form, but the Commuter from Otterbox (http://www.otterbox.com) is an excellent compromise that adds style and protection without a great deal of bulk.

Unlike it's beefier sibling, the Commuter's rubber sleeve is is banded by a smooth plastic shell, which allows the Commuter to easily slide in and out of one's pocket. The case is actually two parts, a thin rubber piece which wraps over most of the phone, providing shock protection, and then the aforementioned plastic piece, which slides over the back of the phone vertically as a band, providing further protection. Finally, there is a screen protector, which must be manually applied and is prone to bubbling. All together, these provide three layers of protection.

In daily use, the case provides fine protection against the usual hazards of iPhone ownership, such as pocket junk, random banging against other objects, and sliding across tables, and its dual layer protection is superior to the high fashion cases. Although, I didn't actually test intentionally dropping the phone, based on the construction of the case, I am pretty confident it would survive a short fall onto a hard surface unless you got unlucky enough to have something impact the front glass. I had enough close encounters with my iPhone 3GS and Commuter to trust Otterbox's design.

What are the downsides of the Commuter? Well, just like the Model T, you can have the Commuter in any color you like, as long as it is black. I was disappointed in the lack of any color options, but this may not be a big deal to many people and I'm sure Otterbox will develop more colors later on. Another negative was the slim flap which protects the dock connection; although a good idea in theory, the flap often comes loose and ends up just being annoying. Finally, the areas where the edges of the rubber of the case touched the phone (such as around the screen and the mute switch) seemed to become dust magnets, although to be fair, many rubber cases have the same issue.

Overall, the Commuter is a great balance of protection in a lightweight design that easily slides in and out of your pocket. For my spouse the protection the Commuter offers is "just right" -- more protection than the "free cases" Apple offered, with a minimal amount of bulk.  If the Otterbox iPhone 4 case was a car, the Commuter would be the luxury sedan while the Defender is a tank. Not everyone wants to drive a tank to work.

Pros: A perfect balance of form and function and superior 3-layer protection
Cons: Lack of color choices, average manual screen protection

Rating  8 out of 10

 
AAPL
$104.83
Apple Inc.
+1.84
GOOG
$543.98
Google Inc.
+11.27
MSFT
$45.02
Microsoft Corpora
+0.64
MacNews Search:
Community Search:

Latest Forum Discussions

See All
view counter

view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter

Toca Boo (Education)
Toca Boo 1.0.2 Device: iOS Universal Category: Education Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0.2 (iTunes) Description: BOO! Did I scare you!? My name is Bonnie and my family loves to spook! Do you want to scare them back? Follow me and I'll show you how!SCARE | Read more »
Intuon (Games)
Intuon 1.1 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $.99, Version: 1.1 (iTunes) Description: Join the battle with your intuition in a new hardcore game Intuon! How well do you trust your intuition? Can you find a needle in a haystack? Can you reveal the truth among the lies? Intuition is your weapon!* Challenge!* Guess!* Win... | Read more »
Ravenous Rampage (Games)
Ravenous Rampage 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Partia 2 (Games)
Partia 2 1.0.1 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $5.99, Version: 1.0.1 (iTunes) Description: Partia 2 is a SRPG (Strategy Role-playing) video game inspired by Fire Emblem and Tear Ring Saga series. In a high fantasy setting, the game will take players through an adventure where magic and sword collide and friendship and... | Read more »
Puzzle to the Center of the Earth Review
Puzzle to the Center of the Earth Review By Campbell Bird on October 23rd, 2014 Our Rating: :: SPELUNKING PUZZLESUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Do some puzzles to make some platforms in this smart and fun free-to-play cave mining adventure.   | Read more »
Sleep Attack TD Review
Sleep Attack TD Review By Jennifer Allen on October 23rd, 2014 Our Rating: :: A TRUE TWISTUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Sleep Attack TD is a tower defense game with a difference – you can rotate the layout – and it’s pretty good.   | Read more »
Mecanic (Education)
Mecanic 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Education Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Plates, screws, wheels ... Everything you need to achieve whatever you want...MECHANICWith 'MECANIC' kids will have fun assembling several different pieces. Straight lines, elbows, rectangles, triangles ... All his pieces have... | Read more »
Earn Your Master Camper Badge in Camp Po...
Earn Your Master Camper Badge in Camp Pokemon Posted by Jessica Fisher on October 23rd, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
Garruk Gets His Revenge in a New Magic 2...
Garruk Gets His Revenge in a New Magic 2015 Expansion, Coming This November Posted by Jessica Fisher on October 23rd, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Sentinels of the Multiverse Review
Sentinels of the Multiverse Review By Rob Thomas on October 23rd, 2014 Our Rating: :: SENTINELS ASSEMBLEiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad Greater Than Games’ tabletop classic, Sentinels of the Multiverse swoops in to save the day on iPad. It’s super!   | Read more »
All contents are Copyright 1984-2010 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.