Posts tagged: OtterBox

OtterBox Armor Series Camo for iPhone 5 Discounted to $25

Otterbox Armor Series iPhone 5 realtree camo front and back

Screaming deal here for an awesome camo waterproof case for your iPhone 5, as OtterBox has dropped the price of their Camouflage version of the Armor Series to $25. What a steal, they must have some inventory sitting around. Perfect for the outdoorsman who wants to protect the heck out of their phone and keep it waterproof. For $25, definitely a steal, even if you only use it part time. Deals like this can only be found on Amazon.

 

OtterBox Releases Preserver Series: Waterproof Cases for iPhone 5/5s/5c

Well it looks like the waterproof department at OtterBox is still alive.

After acquiring key rival and market leader LifeProof, they are back at it designing and releasing waterproof cases, now for the iPhone 5. The Preserver Series for iPhone 5/5s/5c is their latest effort since the Armor Series, a similarly waterproof series of cases for the iPhone 4/4s/5.

This time, the Preserver Series has an improved design, perhaps at the advice of their LifeProof colleagues. The case is designed for Apple’s latest line of phones, including the iPhone 5, 5s and 5c. The Preserver waterproof case features a two piece shell design with an interior foam piece for shock and drop protection. The inside of the case also has rubber bumpers to protect the phone from moving within the case and absorbing additional shock.

OtterBox Preserver black front waterproof case iphone 5 5s 5c

The O-ring is overmolded around the interior perimeter and surrounds a glass covering that protects the camera and flash so pictures are clear. The bottom ports for charging / microphone are the familiar two piece overmolded folding design and are padded. They are waterproof and allow sound to travel through but water cannot.

Notably, OtterBox has continued their tradition of a thin, waterproof screen protector over the front of the case, unlike the LifeProof Nuud. This is a great feature for some, and either they have not developed the Nuud-like technology or they do not want to compete in that arena with LifeProof.

The case is waterproof to 6.6ft (2m) for 30 minutes and is drop proof from 6.6ft. It is dust and ingress proof as well. The case comes with an adjustable lanyard so you don’t lose your case wherever you go.

More details as they emerge.

OtterBox Preserver waterproof case iphone 5 5s 5c
 


 

OtterBox Releases Armor Series iPhone 5 in Real Tree Camo

Otterbox Armor Series iPhone 5 realtree camo grass front and back

Expanding on their wildlife and outdoors theme, OtterBox has released two prints for their waterproof Armor Series case for iPhone 5 in realtree camo. Two camouflage versions exist, one depicting more dry reeds in a water environment, and the other more of a dead wood sort of motif. The dry reeds comes with an orange inner lining / accent color while the woods version has a neon green accent.

Otterbox Armor Series iPhone 5 realtree camo front and back

The cases are slated for a high $109 price at launch, likely increased to cover whomever owns the Real Tree camouflage print. The cases feature all of the same specs as the regular Armor case.
 

 


 

OtterBox Releases Fishing Print Cases for Armor Series iPhone 5

OtterBox Armor Series waterproof case iPhone 5 yellow fishing marlin design front back

OtterBox has released a slew of new designs for their waterproof Armor Series case for the iPhone 5. This time, they have taken inspiration from the very water from which they protect and designed some sportfishing inspired cases. The cases feature bright colors along with pictures of game fish and the signature of the artist that designed them.

From Wikipedia:

Guy Harvey (born September 16, 1955) is a marine wildlife artist and conservationist. His depictions of sealife, especially of sportfish such as marlin, are very popular with sportfishermen and have been reproduced in prints, posters, t-shirts, jewelry, clothing, and other consumer items.

OtterBox Armor Series waterproof case iPhone 5 fishing design front back
The above by Jason Mathias, who ironically had created some skins for former OtterBox rival LifeProof.

The cases will initially retail for an industry high $109, likely due to royalty payments made to the artists who designed them.

OtterBox Armor Series waterproof case iPhone 5 fishing marlin design front back
The above case is by artist Carey Chen.

Pretty cool designs for the angler who wants to protect their phone in style. That said, we’re not sure how you would retrieve it if if your phone falls in the ocean while fishing.
 

OtterBox Releases Yellow and Blue Colors for iPhone 5 Armor Series

OtterBox Armor Case iPhone 5 yellow grey summit front screen
OtterBox seems to have taken a page out of LifeProof’s playbook (whom they recently acquired) as they are (finally) releasing new colors for their waterproof Armor Series line of cases for the iPhone 5. Their latest offerings are called Titanium (yellow and grey) and Summit (blue and grey). The same blue/grey combination has also been released for their iPhone 4/4s Armor case, but Titanium is unique to the iPhone 5.

The new colors are retailing for a steep $99 while arctic, neon and orange colors can be found on Amazon for $70.

OtterBox Armor Case iPhone 5 blue grey summit front screen

You can see a review of this case here and full specs here. The case has a depth rating of 2m (6.6 ft), can withstand drops from 10 ft and up to 2 tons of pressure. It allows for full functionality and is a great way to protect your investment.
 

OtterBox Releases Blue/Grey Armor Case for iPhone 4/4s

OtterBox Armor Case iPhone 4s blue grey front back side

OtterBox has released new colors for their waterproof Armor series of cases for the iPhone 4 and 4s. Shown above is the blue and grey version that is available for the older model iPhone and it is currently selling for $99.

new Armor colors tweet

You can check out a review of this case here and the full specs here. The Armor case for iPhone 4/4s is waterproof down to 2m (6.6 ft) and can withstand a 10 ft drop, as well as 2 tons of pressure. This case can handle almost anything you throw at it, while allowing for full functionality of the phone’s controls and features.
 

OtterBox Acquires LifeProof

OtterBox Purchases LifeProof

Huge news today.

Rather than compete against them, OtterBox has flat out purchased Tree Frog Developments, Inc. which is the parent company of LifeProof. The two companies will combine to focus on protective gear for electronics. No word yet on a purchase price but given LifeProof’s success it is likely steep. LifeProof will become an “OtterBox company” and operate wholly for the foreseeable future. No immediate changes are planned for products.

Check out the press releases at OtterBox and LifeProof.

OtterBox acquires Lifeproof tweet
This comes on the back of both massive delays and questionable profitability of the waterproof OtterBox Armor Series. Perhaps the design task was too much for OtterBox or outside of the realm of their expertise. Or perhaps they saw LifeProof growing too fast and gobbled them up before they expanded to non-water cases.

Either way, a major shift in the industry has occurred. We are still trying to get our heads around it.
 

iPhone 5 Cases: LifeProof vs. OtterBox vs. DriSuit

LifeProof Fre OtterBox Armor Drisuit Endurance iPhone 5

Waterproof Case for iPhone 5 Showdown:

LifeProof Frē vs. OtterBox Armor vs. Drisuit Endruance

With the market for waterproof cases for the iPhone 5 in full swing (albeit the Catalyst + Survivor Escape Capsule late to the party) a full comparison of features, sizes, advantages and specs of the major players offerings for protecting your iPhone 5 is warranted. Of course, this includes the LifeProof Frē, OtterBox Armor, and DriSuit Endurance for iPhone 5.

Reviews of LifeProof Frē, OtterBox Armor, and DriSuit Endurance.

 

Size Comparison

lifeproof_fre_waterproof_iphone_5_case side shot
Size is important for everyday use of a waterproof case. Too big and it is cumbersome to use, too small and it isn’t well protected. Thickness is an important dimension here: surprisingly, the DriSuit is the thickest by far at 20mm (0.79in), nearly twice as thick as the slender Frē. The cases are comparable in terms of width, and in terms of height the OtterBox Armor is the largest.

Height (mm) Width (mm) Thickness (mm) Weight (g)
LifeProof Frē 137.5 67.1 12.2 29.8
OtterBox Armor 140.2 75.5 17.8 111
DriSuit Endurance 132.1 71.1 20.1 n/a

In addition to physical dimensions, case weight is a major concern for most people, as you will be constantly carrying around your phone in the case. The weights of these cases vary wildly. LifeProof is slim and trim at just under 30g, and the OtterBox Armor is a behemoth at 111g. This is much heavier and all around more solid. That said, weight and size somewhat translate into protection, and when your phone falls it is that weight that is absorbing part of the shock instead of your phone. We imagine that the Drisuit will clock in at around 90g, like their original Scuba Suit version for iPhone 4/4s.
 

Depth Rating and Drop Test

Another important metric is how well the case protects your phone from dirt, water, and other drops and spills. This is one way to measure protection and durability, or how well the case will protect your investment. Each manufacturer rates and tests their product to a certain depth at which water will not ingress. It is possible to take the case greater than this depth but not guaranteed by the manufacturer.

Depth Rating (m) Drop Test (m) Dust Proof Crush Test
LifeProof Frē 2 2 IP-68 n/a
OtterBox Armor 2 3 IP-68 2 tons
DriSuit Endurance 2 2 IP-68 n/a

It is clear here that the OtterBox is the strongest of the bunch, as it should be given its size. It has a better drop test rating and more defined crush proofing (2 tons!) than any of the other cases. But that comes at a price (weight). All cases carry the IP-68 standard which puts them on par with depth ratings for water at 2m, or 6.6ft. Please note that the Survivor + Catalyst Waterproof Case for iPhone 5 will have a depth rating of 3m when released.
 

Materials, Screen, Closure System and Seal

otterbox armor iphone 5 headphone charging port cover

Materials Screen Closure System
LifeProof Frē molded plastic, some softer overmold thin, clear plastic top/bottom snap together with small o-ring; clasp covers the charging port with gasket
OtterBox Armor molded plastic, metal clasps, colored soft overmold protective flaps and seals thin, clear plastic top/bottom pieces connect via living hinge; small square o-ring around perimeter. 2 metal clasps then clamp unit together
DriSuit Endurance thicker plastic, plastic clasps, interior overmolded sealing gasket, clear overmold for buttons and front camera/sensor Fluidic Touchscreen Membrane which functions underwater Bottom cap comes off and has waterproof gasket around perimeter. Fits into top piece, while 2 low profile cams on side pull these pieces together, sealing the case.

Almost everything on these cases is injection molded plastic, the differences are mostly in durometer, type of plastic and color. Notable exceptions include the metal clasps on the OtterBox Armor and the soft pad on the charging port door on the LifeProof Frē. LifeProof has the thinnest plastic, both on the case and screen, while DriSuit uses surprisingly thick materials which add in protection. The Drisuit Fluidic Touchscreen Membrane may be a bit slower than other options for everyday use, with the advantage that it works in/under water while the others do not.
 

Cameras, Headphones, Charging Port

lifeproof_iphone_5_fre_bottom

Front / Back camera / Flash Waterproof w/ Headphones Charging Port
LifeProof Frē Yes / Yes / Yes yes; unscrew cap, then use adapter provided opens with phone in case
OtterBox Armor Yes / Yes / Yes No remove bottom overmold and second seal to access
DriSuit Endurance Yes / Yes / Yes Yes, small built in waterproofing connection must undo and remove bottom cap of case

All cases allow for both front and back camera, which includes flash. This seems to be an industry standard nowadays. DriSuit has the best waterproof headphone usage as the connection comes waterproof standard – no extra pieces or adapters. LifeProof is next best with a small adapter that seals into the case and creates a waterproof seal for your standard headphones. OtterBox does not offer any waterproofing options for headphones. For Charging, LifeProof is easiest as you open one waterproof clasp. OtterBox requires you to peal away to overmolded pieces, while DriSuit requires that you undo and remove the bottom cap of the case.
 

Color Options

LifeProof Fre iPhone 5 waterproof case colors 2013

Available Colors
LifeProof Frē Black, White, Blue, Earth, Red, Cyan, Magenta, Lime, Yellow, Olive
OtterBox Armor Arctic, Neon, Orange
DriSuit Endurance Black; White planned and possibly others

LifeProof offers the most color options, but perhaps the OtterBox colors are a bit more aggressive or edgy. DriSuit only has a black model out but like their 4/4s case, we can expect variations in the future.

 

Massive Price Drop: OtterBox Armor Series to $60

OtterBox Armor Series iPhone 5 orange front and back

Just days after we reported that OtterBox had dropped the price of their Armor Series waterproof cases to $81.58, they are at it again, this time taking a further 25% off and pricing the iPhone 5 models at $60. All in, they have reduced the price from $99 to $60 in about a week, a reduction of nearly 40%.

Note that these price drops are only effective on Amazon (via the OtterBox store, ironically). Anyone who ventures to OtterBox’s website will pay the original retail price of $99.

It makes one wonder why so many price drops so soon. The cases were released barely two months ago (February 2013) and already the prices are falling off a cliff. Granted, OtterBox released late in the product life cycle and LifeProof has already dropped the price of their Fre case a bit from $79 to $75. At $60, OtterBox comes in far lower than LifeProof and lower than DriSuit and Catalyst are expected.

It seems that OtterBox is feeling the heat of competition, but perhaps they are sitting on a ton of inventory which may not be selling as forecast. Time will tell but the price wars are just getting started.

Live prices on Amazon below:

 

 

20% Discount on OtterBox Armor Series for iPhone 5 on Amazon

OtterBox Armor Series iPhone 5 all colors discounted

Well, that industry-high $99 pricing didn’t last long.

OtterBox’s retail site on Amazon has heavily discounted all colors of the Armor Series for iPhone 5 to $81.58. A strange, but good price. Stranger, they have not discounted the price of the Armor Series for iPhone 4/4s, which is a significantly older phone. Perhaps that is next.

With LifeProof dropping the price on its Fre for iPhone 5 case to $70 not long ago, there was definite pressure on OtterBox at the $99 price point. While these two are already dropping prices, DriSuit and Catalyst still aren’t fully out yet with product.

You can monitor the live prices on Amazon below: