Kee Utility Slider
Doesn’t affect external buttons and camera; cutomizable
Little protection; no cutout for dock-connector port
US$29.95 + US$17 shipping
KEE’s US$30 Slider for iPhone 4/4S is a two-piece hard-shell case and its pieces come in nine colours each – making a total of 81 possible colour combinations. Despite the allure of customizability, however, I was disappointed to find this case’s soft matte finish to be easily scratched and marred, even within the short time that I tested it.
As its name implies, the Slider’s two pieces slide around your iPhone – one from the top and the other from the bottom – and meet near the centre, where a tab on the bottom piece hooks onto a small ridge in the top piece. Although it is relatively simple to slip on, I had to bend the top piece a little to get around the iPhone’s volume buttons and Ring/Silent switch.
This case fits really snugly around the iPhone and – from a design perspective – I liked that its edges were perfectly flush with the iPhone’s screen. That said, if you’re looking for something that will protect the screen, you’ll be left wanting more.
I’m willing to overlook the easy-to-scratch exterior and the lack of screen protection, but the Slider has a major flaw and it’s a deal-breaker for me. Though it has nicely moulded cutouts for the iPhone’s camera and LED flash (which weren’t affected at all by the case), volume buttons, Ring/Silent switch, Sleep/Wake button, speaker and microphones, it lacks a cutout for the dock-connector port: you’re forced to remove the bottom half of the case every time you want to plug your phone into anything.
Macworld Australia’s buying advice
As I see it, there are many cases at this price point that are much more durable and functional than the Slider, but if there’s a particular colour combination you’re looking for that you just can’t seem to find anywhere else (and you’re always gentle with your iPhone), the Slider performs reasonably well despite some severe limitations.