Meet the Tank: Otterbox Defender Series Cases
For purposes of this review, the HTC Incredible 2-model case was used.
With the increased utility of today’s phones users have a lot more at stake should they be damaged. One simple slip and your calendar/mailbox/GPS/photo album/recipe book/et cetera, et cetera, ends up at best scratched and damaged or at worst, ruined outright. The bulk of phone cases available today consist of a cheap plastic frame or silicone sleeve which allow easy access to the phone, but provide little resistance from anything more than daily wear and tear. Being the kind of person who sees tech as an investment and wishes to safeguard it accordingly, I wasn’t about to trust a thin layer of silicone with the well-being of my HTC Droid Incredible 2. Narrowing my search on Amazon to the more substantial protection available, I came across Otterbox, whose design philosophy for their Defender line of products is apparently centered upon the idea that in the event of nuclear armageddon, the roaches should have plenty of personal electronics available for use after we’re gone.
What you get for your money is a solid plastic frame and integral screen protector with a thick non-slip silicone sheath wrapped around the edges and back for impact absorbance and a secure grip. I have yet to encounter an issue with use of the touchscreen even through the protector. As a matter of fact, I genuinely forgot the protector was in place while operating the phone. Openings for the dual cameras, LEDs, and speakers are precisely set but recessed as a protective measure. Studs to depress the power and volume buttons are set into the silicone. The headphone and USB ports are accessible via sealable flaps in the sheath to prevent dust and debris from entering. Ultimately, once secured in the case, at no point are you (or much of anything else) touching the actual phone. The case becomes an intermediary for almost everything you’d need to do. This thing laughs at scratches and scoffs at attempts to remove from pockets.
The Incredible 2 is an attractive slim-profile device, a point which becomes completely irrelevant once locked in the case. From an aesthetic standpoint, it’s obvious Otterbox sank some thought into their attempts to make the Defender as attractive as possible. But there’s no mistaking the purpose of the Defender, which means looks are ultimately a secondary concern. The belt holster, as it’s too big to call it a mere “clip”, adds even more bulk to the package and unfortunately, its use isn’t quite optional due to the non-slip silicone. The sheath takes its job of providing a gripping surface very seriously. While this means the chances of your device slipping out of your grasp are small, it also resulted in the removal of the phone from a jean or shirt pocket becoming a bit problematic at times as it positively refused to let go of the cotton.
If looks are as important to you as protection, you’re better off looking at Otterbox’s other lines. But the Defender wasn’t designed for sleek looks and sexy presentation. It was designed to allow full functionality of your device while keeping butterfingers, bad decisions, or just plain old karma from separating a person from their data via busted screens and scrambled components. If you’re the type of person who believes proper protection consists of the best armor available, the Otterbox Defender is the right choice.
This product receives a 4.5/5.0.
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