Review: Apple Leather iPhone 6 Case

This is quite unusual for me. I bought my shiny new iPhone 6 and I immediately went out and covered it up with a case. I have used my last 2 iPhones without cases. My last iPhone, the iPhone 5s, I used with Wally wallet adhesive but it provided no real protection. I just like the both the look and feel of the iPhone enough that I didn't want to taint that with a case. So why did I change my mind with the iPhone 6?

Why a Case?

I bought a case right away because this is the first iPhone I have owned that felt like it could easily slip out of my hands. In fact, on my first day in the office after buying the iPhone a co-worker dropped my iPhone (it's ok, THE IPHONE WAS NOT DAMAGED). But this event confirmed my initial thoughts with the phone...it is so thin and light and in combination with the brushed aluminum it is just too darn easy to drop. That's probably the single most important feature of the Wally that I liked on my iPhone 5s, the leather feel on the back of the phone was just tactile enough that I wasn't going to lose my grip on the phone. So why didn't I just get the Wally again for the iPhone 6? Just like in my post talking about whether to buy the iPhone 6 or 6 Plus, the size of the iPhone 6 is noticeably larger in my pocket. I was worried that the extra thickness of the Wally combined with the extra surface area of the iPhone 6 would make it look and feel like I was carry around a small paperback book in my front pocket. So I opted to go with the most minimalist case I could find but still have a little bit of extra protection. Who better to make a case that wouldn't take away from the appeal of the iPhone 6 design than Apple?

Thoughts on the case

So I got the blue leather Apple case for my iPhone 6. I went with leather because of how much I like the soft feel of leather with the Wally. The first thing I noticed with the Apple case was that the leather was much stiffer and not as soft as the Wally. The Apple leather felt more like a semi-hard plastic case with grain printed onto it. At least that was my first reaction. After using the case for a while I realized that the leather was more like the rugged leather used in really high-end handbags or cowboy boots. It was pretty thick and durable and was slicker than most leather. This "slickness" is actually a really nice feature. Think about it. You just got this bigger phone and you now have to slip it in and out of your pockets. I think Apple hit a really good balance with this case. It seems to be just "grippy" enough to keep you from dropping it but slick enough that you can easily slide it into your pockets. I also put my iPhone into a vent holder in my car. Despite the iPhone 6 being wider than my previous iPhone 5s it still easily fit into my Kenu holder. Note that there is a new version of the Kenu Airframe car AC vent holder called the Kenu Airframe+ that accomodates wider smartphones (over 4 inches in diagonal). The Apple case with the iPhone 6 does not require the larger Kenu Airframe+, but the iPhone 6 with a larger case or the iPhone 6 Plus might.

The case itself is very easy to install, it very snugly snaps right onto the iPhone. Both volume buttons and the power button are covered with buttons built into the case and they work just as well as the original buttons. The silent on/off switch is now inset slightly into the case making a bit trickier to turn on and off (especially one-handed), but I don't consider this too big of a deal. I really like the way the case hugs the iPhone 6. It just barely comes above the surface of the glass such that if you were to drop in the case would hit the floor before the glass would, even if you dopped it face down. The bottom of the Apple case is cutout so that the headphone jack, mic, lightning connector port and the speaker are all exposed. This makes it really handy for accessing this things but you are trading a little bit of protection for that convenience.

Bottom line...if you are looking for a minimalist case that is as close to carrying around a naked iPhone as you can get then this is the case for you. It gives you that little bit of extra grip and protection but it still feels like an iPhone 6 in the hand.

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