gadg-et-oid [gaj-it-oid]


1. having the characteristics or form of a gadget;
resembling a mechanical contrivance or device.

Proporta Aluminium Lined Leather iPhone 4 Case Review

I’ve long been a fan of Proporta’s aluminium lined leather cases. A stiff sheet of even as soft a metal as aluminium is a great protection for a screen, particularly the expansive sheets of glass found on modern handsets. It’ll disperse a sharp impact over the phone and, in theory, prevent it cracking your screen.

Proporta have taken their alumunium lined leather case in a different direction for the iPhone 4. Whilst most of their phone cases secure the phone in place with plastic coated metal clips on the sides and bottom, this case opts for a soft leather holster into which the iPhone 4 slips from an opening at the top. This is, in my personal opinion, a much more durable and forgiving method of securing a phone into one of these cases. The metal clips were great for showing off an entire phone in all its glory, but they plastic coating wore off over time and left me somewhat paranoid about using them. This new alternative is a step in the right direction.

Proporta have also recognised where the ugly spot is on most screen protectors; around the Home button. They’ve covered the home button with a little Proporta logo, rather than having the cut-out that most leather cases of this ilk opt for. This means that the ugly bits where adhesion of the screen protector fails around the home button are covered up nicely. It doesn’t translate a press well to the home button, however, or the tactile force back… but if it’s aesthetics you’re after then it’s definitely a bonus.

The inside of the case consists of a contrasting cream leather to balance out its black exterior, behind the iPhone is a fetching, pin-striped black fabric which you’ll barely see when your phone is in its case, but it adds that little extra bit of interest otherwise. The flap has a cut-away portion on the inside, which reveals the aluminium intsert onto which “Proporta” has been etched.

The stitching in this particular example seems a bit hap-hazard, and it looks hand-stitched. Around the camera cut-out in particular it’s not brilliant, but these little details are only visible on close inspection.

Where this case falls a little flat on its face is in the cut outs at the bottom. The speaker/microphone cutouts don’t appear to exist, with a wide dock cutout giving way to leather, then the open corners. The leather at either side of the dock cutout actually sits over the top of the speaker and microphone, whilst it doesn’t block them out altogether it certainly wont do sound input and output any favours.

Overall, the Proporta Aluminium Lined Leather case for iPhone 4 is a pleasant and affordible case with a strong focus on aesthetics and protection. In reality the covered speaker and microphone are probably more protected than they are muted and the choice of a leather pouch for the iPhone instead of metal clips is one I appreciate- I never was a fan of the metal clips. The £29.95 price tag isn’t too steep for a case of its ilk, either.

Sunday, August 8th, 2010, iPhone.