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


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

Proporta Soft-feel Silicone iPhone 4 Case Review

I’ve made it no secret that I’m not a huge fan of silicone cases, but Proporta have made an admirable effort with their Soft-feel silicone case, designed to not only protect your iPhone 4 from bumps and scuffs, but protect you from your own disgraceful lack of hygiene. Oh, wait! Aren’t Apple users are a clean people with an obsessive compulsive distaste for dirt and clutter?

The Proporta Soft-feel Silicone case purports to kill 99.9% of all germs, a bold claim that should probably be narrowed down to “kills 99.9% of germs that come into prolonged content with its surface.” That is to say that clutching your iPhone 4 as an alternative to washing your hands after a trip to the toilet, probably wont leave you with particularly clean hands, but your case should be clean enough for the next unfortunate person to pick it up.

Ultimately our computer keyboards and tightly-clutched gadgets and gizmos, which are never washed thoroughly, are often claimed to harbour more bacteria and germs than toilet seats. This is an understandable claim, with the average toiled seat receiving, I would imagine, a thorough weekly clean and coming into contact with little more than bottoms… which aren’t commonly used to touch all the dirty door handles we must manipulate in every day life.

Having a case that eliminates germs is a good idea on paper, but I’ve had phones for what must now be longer than 10 years, and have never caught any serious illnesses from them. It’s usually the guy across the office coughing and spluttering that causes those problems. With that in mind, let’s set aside this mostly non-feature and look at the case itself.

First and most obviously, it lives up to its name. It really does feel soft. However, whether or not this soft-feel is actually appealing to you is a whole different question. Personally, I can’t quite like it. It has a feel not unlike paper. and is definitely a matter of preference.

The black/green colour combination isn’t bad, but the outside is predominately black with green only peeking through for the Proporta logo, around the camera, and around the volume buttons. This adds some nice accents, but the case would probably look better with a little more colour on the outside.

The back and sides of the case have a grip pattern should fall under your thumb and fingers when held in your left hand. It doesn’t appear to afford any more grip than a regular leather case, but I’m not the sort to make wild gestures, phone in hand, even when attempting to test such things. Even dropping the naked iPhone 4 has never been a problem.

The power and volume buttons translate action well enough through to the phone, they’re still not a patch on those in the official Apple bumper, which I have yet to see topped, but do the trick. The cut-out on the bottom provides ample room for the dock connector, speaker and microphone, the camera cut-out doesn’t cause any problems with the flash, and there are even a couple of holes at the bottom of the case on the back, through which you can presumably thread a lanyard for even more security.

Overall, it’s not a particularly bad example of a silicone case. Sadly, it suffers quite significantly from visible-mould-line syndrome, which is quite a shame, and is neither expensive nor cheap at £20. Finally, only three colour combinations are available: Black/Pink, Black/Green, Black/Grey. If cleanliness is your thing, however, the “SteriTouch” anti-microbial technology might float your boat.

For more information on the latest smart phones and handsets available in the UK, visit phones4u.

Saturday, August 14th, 2010, iPhone.