Unplggd tryout Mike Tyson returns with a product review which may bring relief to fellow iPhone 4 users experiencing the death grip effect.
Product: Belkin Grip Vue
There is no denying the dreaded antenna issue plaguing the iPhone 4 launch. Of course, there is the trusty tape method but many refuse (and rightfully so) to put a piece of tape on such an expensive piece of technology. Others have opted for a case however there are very few options on the market and even fewer in stock. So today, I'd like to do a timely review of the Belkin Grip Vue for the iPhone 4, which is available online and in stores via Best Buy at the reasonable price of $24.99.
Design: The Grip Vue is elegantly understated. One of the most important aspects to me when searching for a case was to find one that didn't compete with the beauty of the phone itself. The single piece Grip Vue has a translucent back which dulls the glossy black of the iPhone to a slate grey. Apple's logo and text show through nicely. The Belkin logo is embossed in the lower left-hand corner. I must say I like this design a lot better than Apple's Bumper since it has a full back cover which prevents messy fingerprints from developing on the back glass. There is a cut out for the camera and flash. The sidewalls, unlike the back, are completely transparent. There is a hole for the headphone jack, primary and secondary microphone, vibrate/ring switch, and charger input. The hold and volume buttons are covered by the case, which leads me to my only complaint.
The case's material is quite resilient which is good for the occasional drop but makes it more difficult to press the buttons. I'm guessing that this resiliency might weaken in time making it easier to press but that is only speculation. Additionally, the vibrate/ring switch is a bit hard to access making it difficult to quickly switch from one to the other. The front face of the phone is left completely open with a very small amount of the case covering its face (I mention this as it may interfere with a screen protector).
Material: The case is made from a thermoplastic polyurethane material. It is more sturdy than your typical gel cases however more flexible than a rigid plastic one. The material has a very satisfying feel in your hand and has a slight grip to it that makes it easier to pull out of your pocket.
Size & Weight: The case is perfectly fitted to the iPhone 4 which still retains its sleek, thin shape. You won't notice any increase in size to your phone unless you have a "Princess and the Pea" sensibility with your tech. The weight is a minor 2.1oz.
Overall: Whether you're looking to prevent reception loss or simply looking to protect your investment, the Belkin Grip Vue is a perfectly good option. The price is fair and it is readily available on the market. Some of the buttons are more difficult to access but the material is very sturdy and easy to hold. How well this will withstand the test of time when more cases hit the shelves is unknown but if you need something now, the Grip Vue will certainly get the job.
Review by Mike Tyson
Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. However, the manufacturer did give us the product for testing and review purposes.