With the release of the iPhone 5, the desire to protect your new investment is probably high. If you peruse the saturated market of cases for your new toy, you won’t find many better than Case-Mate. Case-Mate has been making accessories for Apple enthusiasts for a long time, and often provide unique case designs and high-quality craftsmanship. Did their updated version for their highly popular Barely There case hold true to the history of great products?
Read on to find out.
The Barely There case is just that: barely there. The case is extremely thin, something I’m always a fan of. The Barely There is of the snap-on fashion; simply insert your phone, button side first, for an easy installation. The case is composed of soft-touch polymer, making handling the Barely There a pleasure.
The inside of the case is a lined with a shock-absorbing material, which should alleviate some of your worries about the Barely There being so thin.
The bottom of the case features one large cutout for the headphone jack, speaker, microphone, and lightning connector. Similarly, the top has the same single cutout for the sleep/wake button. On a bit of a tangent, I wonder if case companies will start providing a smaller cutout at the top of their iPhone 5 cases. Since there is a single button on the top of the device, there is the availability of providing even more protection by providing more case, and less of a cutout.
The side of the case features a single cutout for the ring/silent switch and volume rockers. The cutout is nice and shallow, and allows for easy access to the buttons, regardless of how big your hands are. On the other side of the case, there is also some Case-Mate branding, which looks really nice and isn’t distracting at all.
The front of the case features a lay-on-the-table design, which is something new to the Barely There series. If you happen to set your phone face down on the table, you need not worry about it being scratched because the case lifts the face of the phone off of the surface on which it’s placed.
The back of the case features a large cutout for the camera and flash. Of course, I haven’t experienced any issues with “flash bleeding” during camera use. An interesting tidbit about the camera cutout: it’s, in my opinion, a little too big. I’d bet that many case companies, while designing cases for the iPhone 5, (safely) overestimated the needed real estate needed for the camera and went from there, almost like a “better safe than sorry” way of thinking. I suppose it isn’t a bad thing, merely interesting. The bottom of the case features Case-Mate’s logo, which is minimal and looks nice.
The Barely There, for me, works perfectly. I love the minimalist design and the little quirps that together add up to a great experience. At $30, the Barely There fits right in with the rest of the market and offers Case-Mate’s legendary high-quality craftsmanship. You can check out the Barely There on Case-Mate’s website.
Pros: Minimalist design, great features.
Cons: Camera cutout is a little too big.