Review: OtterBox iPhone 5s Cases

OtterBox, iPhone 5s cases, wallet case
OtterBox Commuter Wallet case, image via OtterBox

I admit, I’m vain about cases for my iPhone. I could easily spend hundreds of dollars tricking it out.

I have a nice collection for my iPhone 4s, including cases featuring Batgirl, Wonder Woman, a wallet case, a hardy survivor/hiking case (my youngest son has that now), and protective cases in various colors, able to be swapped out depending on my mood.

All those became instantly useless when I finally traded up to the 5s this month. It was time to try out new cases.

A wallet case was the first order of business because I found it incredibly useful to have my debit card handy with my iPhone instead of having to dig into my purse for my wallet. The next was a case that reflected my personal taste, something I hadn’t tried before. I ended up with the OtterBox Commuter Wallet series and New England Patriots-logo version of the OtterBox Defender series. Taking them one at a time:

The OtterBox Commuter Wallet case

What I liked:

The credit cards are tucked inside the case and won’t slip or fall out, always a possibly with my old case.

The case itself is rugged and offers excellent phone protection.

What I didn’t like:

The slider mechanism for the hidden compartment is tricky to open.

The hidden compartment only holds three cards, maximum. It’s not a substitute for a purse or even a wallet, though it would come in very handy for certain situations like trips to the theme park, where carrying around a purse is a pain, or at an airport, when the phone is out and the wallet is stashed away.

NFL Defender case by OtterBox, image via OtterBox

Defender Series case with New England Patriots logo

What I liked:

The case goes together in stages, with a screen protector, a polycarbonate inner layer, and a harder silicone outer layer, plus a belt-clip holster. This is solid protection. The belt clip-on can be placed over the touchscreen, offering extra protection even if you don’t have pockets.

NFL logos became available just in time for the start of the NFL season.

What I didn’t like:

The belt clip-on offers the extra protection but using it means you can’t access the phone.

Other than the Patriots logo, it is plain. No bells and whistles.

It’s on the bulky side for just a case. That is the flip side of having added protection. OtterBox does have another line with slimmer cases though these may offer less protection.

OtterBox, iPhone 5s cases, smartphone case
Defender case with clip over touchscreen, image via OtterBox

I’m sure these two cases are just the beginning for my 5s. For instance, it’s definitely time to purchase the ever-elusive Black Canary case.

Disclaimer: GeekMom received these items for review purposes. 

Writer, Mom, Geek and Superhero. though usually not all four on the same day. Author of the award-winning Phoenix Institute Superhero series and the steampunk novel, The Curse of the Brimstone Contract.