Review: Red Snapper Soft Personalized Case for iPhone 5
The idea of custom-printed iPhone cases isn't new, and in fact, Red Snapper has been doing it for years now. But there's a new twist in the Soft Personalized Case for iPhone 5 (£20/~$32): once you've submitted your picture online, one of the company's graphic designers will crop it and send along a proof for your approval before turning it into a flexible case. The review unit we received was not executed very well, though; it's unclear if it's a representation of the line as a whole, or a not particularly well-tailored version that made its way out of the factory.
Made from a “strong, flexible silicone,” Soft Personalized Case has a glossy finish to it, but the quality of the material isn’t fantastic, and the image quality is also rather disappointing. Even though Red Snapper used one of its own images, the picture just doesn’t look great on the case. It seems to be a low resolution shot, it isn’t too sharp, and the colors are a bit washed out. We’ve seen much higher quality from top competing hard cases.
Although the image and material quality would be forgivable to some degree if the case was otherwise good, it’s equally disappointing. We had a hard time properly wrapping the case around the iPhone 5; it seems to be a little bit short, as it takes some finagling to get it properly in place. Even then, “proper” isn’t the right word. The bottom doesn’t come all the way over the edge, and the holes for the headphone port and mic, Lightning port, and speaker not only don’t like up properly, but are misshapen. Red Snapper also chose to leave the buttons fully exposed, which is a disappointment for a soft case.
We like the idea of a case with an image tailored for a specific user, but Red Snapper’s implementation doesn’t make the grade. It fails in the two areas it has to succeed: the image quality is poor, and it’s not a good case. Even if the case were shaped properly, it wouldn’t be impressive. Distinctive though the idea may be, Soft Personalized Case earns a C- rating on the merits of its execution.
Updated: Following our review, Red Snapper sent a second review unit, pictured above, but it has the same basic issues as the first. While the image is sharper, the holes along the bottom edge are still misshapen, almost to the point that it looks like the case was melted in some way; the bottom was modestly better on the second case we were sent. Our rating and views on this design remain the same.