Hands-on review: Incase Snap Case for iPhone 4

Back in July, Apple kicked off the iPhone 4 case program in response to "antennagate." Earlier this month, I bought myself an iPhone 4, and I've only just received the free case. Here's a look.

Back in July, Apple kicked off the iPhone 4 case program in response to "antennagate." Earlier this month, I bought myself an iPhone 4, and I've only just received the free case. Here's a look.

First, the timeline of my own personal experience with the iPhone case program:

  • August 3: Bought the iPhone 4 at the Apple Store in downtown San Francisco; downloaded the iPhone case program app the same evening and ordered the Incase Snap Case for iPhone 4
  • August 24: Finally received a notification e-mail from Apple that the case had shipped
  • August 28: The Incase accessory arrived in my mailbox in a small, padded white envelope

At the time of purchase, Apple wasn't selling cases in stores as most were pulled to be options for the free program. Furthermore, the app informs customers that the expected wait time is four to six weeks. Thus, my case did arrive on time (if not early). It just felt like an eternity while waiting.
I opted for the full backside, rubber Incase option over a bumper as I tend to be a clumsy person and would rather more protection from bumps and scratches. (To take care of the front touchscreen, I purchased a set of three Case-Mate protective plastic covers for $14.99 as covers aren't included with the Incase accessory.)

The smoke-colored Incase Snap Case fits like a dream. It's easy to just "snap" on, and you're done. The grip feels secure in my hand, and it doesn't seem like the smartphone will slip out of the case easily. The only openings are for the side volume buttons (seen in the photo above) and for the camera/flash on the rear side of the iPhone. Most importantly, with the semi-clear exterior and simple design, the case doesn't deter from the Leica-esque quality of the iPhone 4.

The Snap Case also comes with a small, clear, plastic stand for propping the iPhone 4 up. While it can hold the iPhone both vertically and horizontally, the device tumbled over often when standing vertically, so be careful.

But the big question is: does it help with the so-called "death grip?" Answer: Yes and no. I'll start with the "no" part as most cell phones on AT&T have the best reception within the walls of my old house, no matter which manufacturer made the device.

But as to holding the iPhone 4 in the left hand, the case definitely helps. I never realized how much I actually hold my smartphone in my left hand until the last few weeks when I noticed bars would drop even when I was just typing a text or checking my e-mail. Without the case, a couple (or all) bars would drop with a minute in my left hand. But with the case, only one bar fell within a minute.

Thus, I would definitely recommend the Incase Snap Case for anyone still eligible to order an accessory from the program (time is limited now), or purchasing it later for $35.

Newsletters

You have been successfully signed up. To sign up for more newsletters or to manage your account, visit the Newsletter Subscription Center.
See All
See All