Linear Crystal and Color cases for iPhone 4/4S review

Sections: iDevice Accessories, iPhone, iPhone/iPod touch/iPad, Reviews

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Provides: Protection for iPhone 4/4S
Developer: SGP
Minimum Requirements: iPhone 4/4S (all versions)
Price: $24.99
Availability: Now

The Linear cases are a three-piece, snap together system that, when combined with the included protective screen, provides near-total wraparound protection for your iPhone 4 or 4S. The cases are designed to work with both versions of those phones (GSM and CDMA), and if you want to spring for more than one case, you can mix and match the styles.

Linear iPhone cases

The three pieces are a back cover—either opaque (Color series) or transparent (Crystal series)—that’s held in place by a bumper, which is two pieces of hard plastic. After placing the long piece over the top, the bottom snaps on in a lever-like fashion: you hook on one end then latch the other. To get the case off, you have to press down on the long end while using your thumbnail to pry up the bottom piece.

This design has two effects: one is that the case stays on very securely, protecting your phone in case of an accidental drop. The other is that the case can be tricky to remove if, say, you need unfettered access to the headphone port. But combined with the included clear plastic cover, everything except the ports, controls, and cameras are covered. One thing I don’t like is that the bumper is virtually flush with the front of the iPhone, meaning if you set it on a table, face down (something I do without thinking all the time), you risk scratching the protective screen.

The difference between the two lines is, as I say, the transparent back vs. the opaque colored back. I preferred the clear back, which let me see the back of the iPhone (and its mirrored Apple logo), or any (thin) skin you might have applied to the back. The bumpers are sold uniform in color (along with the back plate if you get the Color version), but since they’re modular, you can mix and match them if you have more than one…and if you’re into that sort of thing.

The Linear cases from SGP have sturdy designs with a lot of color variations that will allow you to decorate your iPhone to match your own style, and even use skins with. The only problem is that while the case can easily accomodate the Apple earbuds, headphone plugs that are thicker will require you to take the case off, which can be tricky.

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