iPhone 5 Leather Case Thoughts From A Case Hater

I have never liked using a case on my iPhones (from the beginning). I’ve never found one that didn’t make it feel excessively bulky and, well, ugly. I like the feel and look of the devices, and have never liked covering it up with a case. My wife, on the other hand, is pretty rough on her iPhones, and benefits from having one. So I ordered one of the new Apple leather 5/5s cases (blue) for her at the same time I ordered my 5s, with the ulterior motive of evaluating it for myself, to see if I might finally cave in and start using a case.

She loves it – it’s super slim, feels and looks very nice, and provides good protection (especially to the back, edges, and corners, which are the most vulnerable areas on the 5 series, IMO). I liked it too, a lot, so I went out and picked one up for my 5s. I went back and forth on color, between black and red, and finally went with red, just to have a little splash of color. I love it so far. Feels nice, looks GREAT, and doesn’t add hardly any bulk. One of the best features is that it adds a little grip to these very slippery phones, and I feel like it’s much less likely that it’ll slip out of my hand with the case on.

I’ve seen some complaints that the buttons (power and volume) are kind of hard to press through the case, and they are a bit stiff, but not excessively so, and I’m sure they’ll loosen up over time. I’ve also seen complaints that it’s hard to remove the phone from the case, which is true, but I don’t intend to take it out of the case very often, so it’s not a big deal to me. It’s kind of pricey at $40, but that’s Apple for you. Great quality, worth it to me.

A couple of incidental observations:

I picked up the case at the Washington Square Apple Store (in the Portland, OR area) on Saturday afternoon. I used the Apple Store app on my phone to scan and pay for the case without waiting in any lines, or interacting with anyone. Even in a super crowded store, I could have been in and out of there in a minute if I hadn’t stopped to chat with one of the sales guys. Very slick experience.

As I mentioned, the store was PACKED, which isn’t unusual, but besides the normal crowd (I’ve never seen Washington Square mall this crowded, in general), there was a line of about 50 people *outside* the store, queued neatly behind some ropes. Mind you, this was about 4:30pm on a Saturday afternoon. I asked what they were lining up for, and the sales guy told me it was for the 5s. He said that was the first day they’d received any significant stock since launch, and people were still lining up for it.

So, after 6 years, and on my seventh iPhone, I think I finally found a case I like.