Some people like large protective Otterbox style cases while others prefer something so slim you cannot even feel that it is there. True, something so sleek offers virtually no drop protection but at least you get to hold the iPhone 6 the way Jony Ive meant it to be held but a phone in the hand is worth two smashed on the floor and that just might be where your idevice ends up. Luckily there is a somewhat happy median of cases that do not take away too much from the phone but also don’t add a lot either. We have tried third party silicone, plastic and polycarbonate cases that fit this description and even a wooden one. Thing worst part of these cases is if you do not remove them almost every day and wipe clean the inside along with the back and sides of your expensive phone the dirt starts to settle in. Once this happens you will most surely start to see pitting and scratches as the debris get ground into your phone while it bounces away in your pocket. Is poor fitment to blame? Probably. Is lack of maintenance or care the culprit? Maybe. There may be hope though. Apple has some pretty professional looking cases out for both the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus and although these are nothing new, being released alongside the phone itself we believe it is time we but potentially the best case to the test. The Apple leather case.
Arguably the best feature of all the first party iPhone 6 cases is the microfiber lining that covers the inside of every case they offer. It prevents the case itself from causing any damage to your device and has been used for screen cleaning and car cleaning for a lot longer than it has been lining the inside of cases yet it seems no one ever really thought to put it where Apple has and in our opinion it is genius. This feature is easily the best part about this case. Now that’s not to say dirty microfiber will do a better job than sandpaper protecting the back of an iPhone but that is where even more of the microfiber beauty comes in. The case fits so well that dirt cannot get into the normal places a case might let it and the rest of the gap is taken up by the microfibers. This is very apparent around the camera hole cutout. It has been over two weeks since we installed this leather case and the inside is still completely clean of dirt or potential damaging foreign particles.
Since the “back scratching” issue was completely solved for us be this one feature I would already consider the purchase a success and an easy favorite here at Mainboard but lets see what else it has to offer as far as protections and style.
Bringing the thickness of the device to 9mm from 6.9mm means not much bulk is added and this added height also allows the device to set face down and still provide the protection it needs. We feel it is never good practice to do so but rest assured it will if you will. The bottom of the leather case features an open design to allow for a range of chargers and accessories to be compatible but be careful. Although the the corners are still protected from a drop a direct hit in the middle would almost surely spell demise. The only other openings are the mute button and camera cut out. Rest assured it keeps the camera off whatever you may have your iPhone resting on. An over exaggerated problem due to the lens being made of crystal sapphire just like the non sport Apple Watch, it generally isnt going to scratch unless something harder gets to it. Both the volume up and volume down buttons are raised extensions of the case itself along with the sleep button. These are all surprisingly easy to press and provide solid feedback upon pressing. We fear these might wear out in the future due to flexing of the leather but since this case is only two weeks old we will have to wait and see. Lastly both the microfiber and leather seem to be covering a most likely polycarbonate shell inside that give it structure. It is rigid yet still easy to work with and we dont see having to take the phone out of this case much to clean so even if it feels a little tricky to you to put on it will most likely be a non issue after the fact.
The overall quality of the leather is good, It is smooth almost to the point of feeling fake. The leather is layed down very well and even, no disappointments there at all. All the leather cases are dyed, even the black so expect no matter what color you choose to wear gracefully as it becomes more used. Red appears to age the worst which was our first choice but I suppose you could say we new better so black it was. The leather will undoubtedly snag or take some sort of surface damage if used rough as any leather would but lets just call it character. Although this case has never encountered water I have seen a few that have via being left in a wet spot on the coffee table and because it is leather and it is organic it will absorb it and when it does it will swell.
The cost of $45USD seemed like a bit much for a phone case and was probably the reason it took so long to succumb to it but with enough scratches to motivate us to take the plunge we are glad we did. It is the best fitting, most professional looking phone case used by us to date. It is a joy to hold even if you may have to be a bit more careful to protect it versus a plastic case. It will increase the resale value of our iPhone 6 especially when coupled with a tempered glass screen protector like the one we had just installed and that makes it a solid investment in our eyes. Apple has a 14 day return policy or exchange so as long as you have the receipt that was either given or mailed to your email account resolving any issues should be a breeze and hey, who doesn’t like an excuse to go into their local Apple store and poke around? I assume the iPhone 6 Plus version should be identical for the sake of this review with only the cost being different at $50USD.
If you are thinking of buying one, or are tired of sub par phone cases experiences we do not have a better recommendation for you than the official Apple leather cases. It just goes to show that you usually get what you pay for and these are no exception to that rule.