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


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

XGear Live BlackOut, Shadow and Flex iPhone 4 Case Reviews

With so many iPhone cases and so little time I’d like to introduce you to three iPhone 4 case offerings from XGear Live in one short, but sweet post.

The BlackOut, Shadow and Flex cases represent a good selection of iPhone case offerings. The BlackOut and Shadow are hard-cases, and the Flex a transparent silicone case that attempts to preserve the sharp good looks of your iPhone whilst still offering protection.

iPhone 4 Frosted Flex Silicone Case

The Frosted Flex is actually rather good and both it, and it’s iPad alternative, look pretty good. My dislike of silicone cases has never been a secret, they really offer nothing aesthetically and typically look ugly, but the Flex is generally well made and of an atypically high quality compared to similar cases. The inside back of the case is textured, giving the back a frosted effect that, whilst not really clear, looks good.

The Flex has cutouts in all the right places and moulded buttons that translate your press through to the volume up/down buttons on the phone itself. I feel these could be raised a little more, but fear this might lead to accidental presses in a tight pocket, so XGear have probably made a good call.

iPhone 4 Blackout Shell Case

The BlackOut, as you might have guessed from its name, takes an entirely different approach than the flex. Simply put, it’s black, and fans of the Incipio Feather will be intimately familiar with its design. Thin, black, light, simple and strong the XGear BlackOut gives the Feather a run for its money and really takes some abuse. A couple of holes in the bottom of the back provide an anchor point for a lanyard which is another bonus. The BlackOut has an open top and bottom, but keeps the corners of your iPhone 4 protected, and has a cutout for the volume buttons and silent switch. If you want a good, tough and simple case to give your iPhone 4 a fingerprint resistant matte black back in addition to a reasonable amount of protection, then it’s definitely a good choice.

iPhone 4 Shadow Shell Case

Finally there’s the Shadow, cut from the same cloth as the BlackOut, all the same points on simplicity, lightness, strength and protection apply to the Shadow. The only differences, in fact, are that the Shadow has a carbon fibre effect back which will perfectly match the XGear Carbon Folio if you’re rocking one of those for your iPad. It also lacks the lanyard holes of the BlackOut, but I imagine that’ll not bother most. It’s more durable than the carbon folio, due to it’s simplicity, and if you’re a fan of carbon fibre then it’s absolutely a must have case.

Overall, these are three very good cases showing that XGear can really give the Feather a run for its money and that they have a grip on what makes a good silicone case. I’d say buy any of the above if they take your fancy, but particularly like the BlackOut for its clean look.

Sunday, October 17th, 2010, News.