Otterbox Cases are known for being tough and extremely protective. Some of them are nothing but a cushioned case to protect from short drops, though. But this one — Otterbox calls “The Toughest Case Ever Built”, saying it provides “absolute protection for device use in extreme conditions.” It sounds like the perfect case for travel and adventures!
So what do I think about this case?
Well, I’ve owned the Otterbox Defender series case for the iPhone 4 for a couple years now, so throughout this review, I will mention the two cases occasionally. (and I’ll review the Defender Series case next week!)
As you can see from the above photo, the Armor case is BIG. Some people might shy away from it because of that reason alone. It still fits in a pocket easily, but it is noticeably bigger than the Defender case. BUT because of the size of it, it provides ultimate protection. This case is absolutely rugged.
This is a two piece case that is extremely simple to put on and take off. It latches shut with two strong metal hinges.
The hinges are VERY STRONG! You might even think they are stuck the first time you try to open the case. After you know how to pry them open, though, it’s a breeze to assemble and disassemble this case, just in case you ever need to take out your phone to access it outside of the case for some reason.
Probably the biggest selling point of this case is the fact that it is waterproof. Otterbox markets this case as being waterproof up to 6.6 ft. for 30 minutes. Before you use the case for the first time, you should submerge the case (with no phone inside) underwater for a 30 minute waterproof test to be sure you have a quality product with no defective seals.
Another great thing about the case is that the bright green seals that cover the charging port on the bottom and the headphone jack at the top are removable. This could be convenient if you happen to be using the case a lot in an environment where you don’t necessarily need it to be dust proof or waterproof — because you can remove the plugs and still have a solid case protecting your phone. Just remember to put them back on if you will be around water!
I’ve used this case for about 2 or 3 weeks now, and for the amount of extreme protection it gives to the phone, there aren’t really any downsides. Yes, it is quite big and a bit bulky, but that’s the price you pay to have a case that you can literally take underwater with you!
The edges of the hard plastic seem to be wearing down and showing a lighter grey underneath quite quickly. Peronally, I don’t mind this, because I didn’t expect the case to stay in brand-new condition forever! It’s better to have the case wear down and scratch than to have the phone get scratched up and cracked!
The case has a built-in screen protector (if it wasn’t, it couldn’t possibly be waterproof!). This is great if you always use your phone with the case, but if you ever want to use your phone by itself or switch it out with another case, you might want to have a screen protector applied directly onto your phone. (Having a screen protector already on your phone and using it underneath the Armor’s built-in screen protector will make the two of them stick together and look ‘bubbly’ — but fortunately, it doesn’t really affect the screen clarity when it is powered on.)
The Otterbox Armor series case is also crush proof up and can withstand 2 tons of force. This means if you accidentally drop it in the street, it will not only survive the fall, but it could also be run over by a car and your phone should see full protection throughout the incident.
I think this is a great case to keep around for vacations, backpacking trips, fishing trips, camping trips, etc. You can really put it through a lot of tough conditions without worrying about wrecking your phone. Although it’s only a ‘step-up’ from the Otterbox Defender Series Case, it is in a whole different league of its own!
I give the Otterbox Armor Series Case for iPhone 4/4S 5 out of 5 Stars
In my opinion, this case feels way better constructed and much higher quality than the lifeproof cases. (I’m sure the lifeproof cases work just fine, but if you are in the market for a super-tough phone case, definitely check this one out!)
You can find the Otterbox Armor Series case on Amazon.com — Expect to pay about $30-$40 for this case (not bad, considering it was $100 when it was first released!)