Casellet Wallet Case (for iPhone 4/4S)
Refined hard-shell design; elegant lines and form; doesn’t impose on buttons and camera
Heavy, once full; texture
Because of its success through Kickstarter, the innovative US$35 Casellet wallet case for the iPhone 4/4S intrigued me from the start. On appearance alone, the Casellet has a handsome and refined hard-shell design, with elegant lines and form. Even though the brushed aluminium exterior is not overly practical, it’s both tasteful and aesthetically pleasing.
Measuring in at a depth of 18mm with the iPhone fitted inside, the Casellet basically doubles the footprint of the iPhone 4/4S, which is 9.3mm thick by itself. On the surface, this doesn’t seem like an unreasonable size increase, especially considering the Casellet is mostly constructed from lightweight plastic. However, fully loaded with cash and credit cards, it does feel substantially heavier in my hands and could be too large for individuals with small hands to consider as a day-to-day case and wallet alternative.
The wallet component covers the back of your iPhone. There’s a hinge along the left-hand side and a rectangular button along the right – push the button and pull on the back plate of the case to access the wallet. A plastic clip is attached to the side of the case that hugs your iPhone, where you can slip a few cards and some cash. The right side of the wallet compartment is hollow, so it leaves room for items in the clip when the back of the case is closed.
Inserting your iPhone into the Casellet is a fairly simple process. The manufacturer suggests that when you put on or remove the case you should first open the back to give the Casellet some flexibility. I first fit the right side of my iPhone into the case and then pulled the upper and bottom left corners of the case outward to push the left side of my iPhone into place with little difficulty.
Once inside the Casellet, the top and bottom edges of the iPhone are mostly exposed, leaving all ports and buttons free to use. As a result, you can charge your iPhone with the case still on and even use some dock-cradle accessories (although definitely not all, due to the thickness of the case with the added wallet compartment). The sides of the case barely protrude above the surface of your phone, which provides a limited layer of protection when your iPhone is placed facedown on a flat surface. There is a large, deep cut-out around the LED flash and rear camera, which provides more than enough light to enter the lens of the camera and in no way adversely, affected the quality of the pictures I took.
While I like the idea of a using wallet case (especially one that you don’t have to open to use your iPhone), the Casellet is a good start, but hasn’t reached its full potential. My biggest concern was with the texture of the case. The sides are smooth and slippery, so some added traction could go a long way to prevent accidental drops, especially since I constantly handled the Casellet to retrieve and stow my cash, credit card and driver’s license.