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Well why pay for the sleek lines of an iPhone and then cover up that styling with a brick sized piece of olastic? I am not the hardest user of my iphone but it does get thrown in my pocket regularly when I am keeping fit, taking the dog a walk or doing outdoor pursuits. I have even dropped it on occasion. That is where this case comes in. It might be ugly but it is a TOUGH! There is a thick hard plastic cover and a soft gel feel skin and the screen has a clear film on it too offering more protection. It is fiddly to get on and off so if you intend to change it regularly then I wouldn't bother with this. You can use all the buttons through the soft skin. If you work or play in hostile environments then this case is for you.
I wouldn't say I'm an especially clumsy little monkey but I do have a tendency to throw my phone around. For some unfathomable reason, phones object to my ability to accidentally drop them onto any available hard space from a great height so I need a case that's tougher than a whole regiment of Terminators. For the iPhone 5, this means the Griffin Survivor. Unlike most cases (which are made of plastic), the Survivor is made of a silicon based fabric. This gives it a rather spongy feel (ideal for bouncing harmlessly off stone floors!). It's also one of the few cases to come with a proper plastic screen protector (rather than a transparent sticking plaster) for added protection. When the man in the shop showed me a video of it being run over by a car and STILL working (albeit with a cracked screen), I was sold. Putting the case together really could not be simpler. Although Instructions are provided they are not really needed as there is only one way to do it. You simply place your phone in one half of the case (making sure the various flaps line up with the relevant sockets on your phone), place the protective plastic over your screen and then place the other half of the case over the top of it all and clip it into place. Anyone with half a brain can do it in less than two minutes (which is why it took me three) The Griffin not only provides protection for your phone, it also does an incredibly magic trick. It takes your sleek, slim and shiny iPhone and before your very eyes turns it into... a big black brick! It achieves the impossible - making an Apple product look seriously ugly. Now personally, the security of my phone is most important, so it doesn't worry me too much. However, if your phone is a fashion statement for you then you should steer clear of the Survivor. As a sop to looks, it does come in a range of different colours, but to be honest, if you paint a brick pink, it's still a brick. Actually, even if you're not fashion obsessed, it is a bit of an issue. All that extra padding increases the size of your phone quite dramatically. It will (just) fit in a shirt pocket, but you know it's there and it feels a lot heavier. Once again I think this is a small price to pay for the added protection, but you do need to weigh whether protection or size is more important. Looks aside, the case has been designed really well and provides impressive levels of protection. Even if the phone is dropped from a height onto a hard surface like a pavement; it bounces, rather than landing in a fatal splat! The protective screen adds some strength to the brittle iPhone screen and, as an added advantage, means that all your mucky fingerprints go onto that, rather than your phone. It does mean a little more pressure is required when touching certain areas of the screen (most often in the corners), but you quickly get used to this. The case is so all-encompassing that it even covers all of the phone's buttons and comes up with a simple, but ingenious way to ensure you can still use them. Raised buttons are positioned over the phone's switches and buttons so that pressing it pushes down on the switch on the phone and so activates it. Mostly this works really well, although I do find that the volume control buttons are a little small and trickier to find. Similar protection is afforded to the phone's various sockets, offering protection from the elements. Again, these are niftily designed as hinges on little flaps. When you want to (say) charge your phone, press the little ridge on the flap and it will spring open, giving you access to the charging port. When you're done, simply press it back into position. It's a neat, practical solution that combines maximum protection with ease of access. The one downside to this arrangement comes with the camera. The camera lens is also covered with a flap and so it makes the camera rather less accessible, since you need to leave time to open up the flap to be able to use it. That's not a problem if you are trying to snap a static object, but if you are trying to take a spontaneous one of a bird/child/dog/cat/aardvark doing something funny, the chances are the photo opportunity will have gone long before you are ready to take the shot. As you might expect, the Survivor case is a bit more expensive than other cases, costing a healthy £24.99. However, when you consider how much it would cost to replace your phone if you dropped it, I think this is a small price to pay. It boils down to what you are after: if you want maximum protection for your phone, then it's hard to argue with the Survivor. However, you need to be aware that the price of protection is accepting a few trade-offs around functionality and looks. If your phone's a fashion statement, the Survivor is a fashion disaster. (c) Copyright SWSt 2013
I've got one of those ninja iPhones which leap of furniture at random times for no obvious reason, straight onto the wooden floor. Yes I have insurance but that isn't going to save the photos etc I have on the phone. I was buying a robust case for my daughter's iPad when I came across this phone cover and thought, problem solved. The cover comes in three parts: - A rigid plastic frame, including a screen cover, which is clipped around the phone to protect it. - A thick silicone cover which goes over the frame increasing the protection - A clip which goes over the silicone cover to let you attach it to your belt. (Never used so not part of the review) It is incredibly easy and intuitive to put together as there are gaps all over for the different parts of the phone such as the charging point and the camera. There are also instructions but I didn't need to follow them at all. You can take it on and off fairly quickly too. There are a variety of colours including pink, white and blue available but I chose black. With the cover on the phone looks like a (how to say this nicely) BRICK. So much like a brick that my nephew thought I had lost my iPhone. Could this be a security feature making it an unlikely target for theft ? It definitely works. Now when the phone jumps from the table to the floor, you can hardly hear it at all and I feel safe in the knowledge that it's not going to get damaged. For day to day use, I don't believe that the case interferes with the running of the phone. The outer edges of the screen are lightly obscured by the phone but not in a way that would cause any problems. I also have no difficulty using all the screen functions or changing the phone to silent. I play bejewelled on my phone and noticed no difference when the cover is on. Sound quality seems the same but I don't listen to a lot of music so I cannot fully comment. The one big drawback with the case is the camera. For safety, the camera lens is covered with a silicone triangle that you can lift away when taking a photo, Now it may just be me but I struggle to hold the triangle out of the way, keep the phone steady and take a picture. It is manageable for the odd picture but when you are taking a lot of them in a day, it becomes too much. It got so annoying during a recent walk round the Olympic mascots in London that I removed the case entirely. To sum up, this is a very robust case that will protect your iPhone well without interfering with its function as a phone or screen device. However it detracts significantly from the design quality of the phone and makes taking photos cumbersome.