No one would have predicted last year that Incipio would become one of the most aggressive case developers for an Apple product, but that’s what’s happened: the company continues to release iPhone covers at a surprisingly robust pace. Though its latest designs, Executive OVRMLD ($30) and the SILICRYLIC Case for Apple iPhone ($30), continue to exhibit the same oversights in protection and polish we’ve seen in its earlier releases, they’re interesting enough in design that some users may like them anyway.
The SILICRYLIC case combines a clear hard plastic back shell with a soft silicone rubber case similar to the company’s earlier dermaSHOT ((iLounge rating: C). SILICRYLIC looks and feels sort of like an unfinished version of iSkin’s Claro cases for iPods, with less protection, no video stand, and fewer colors, but also a lower price.
You can presently choose from four specific color combinations: black and gray (mercury) rubber cases come with slightly smoke-tinted shells, while the berry red and light pink versions come with clear shells. When the iPhone’s slotted in to the rubber case, the rubber expands just enough to lock safely into the clear shell, preventing it from falling off during normal use. No screen protection is included, and neither is a belt clip; the rear shell instead has two sets of odd holes possibly intended for attachment of a lanyard, which isn’t included with SILICRYLIC. Frankly, we’re glad that it’s not.
Our impressions of SILICRYLIC are only a little more positive than they were for dermaSHOT. Here, you pay a $17 premium for a case that offers only a little extra protection—the thicker and more complete back shell, plus Sleep/Wake button coverage, minus dermaSHOT’s coverage of the Ringer On/Off switch—and no better style than before. The thin rubber front sides of SILICRYLIC don’t do a great job of covering the metal alongside iPhone’s screen, and actually make a tackier visual impression than less expensive alternatives we’ve tested.
It’s worth a brief mention that, unlike the Executive OVRMLD case, SILICRYLIC bears no stamp that it was designed in California by the company; just like dermaSHOT, it looks and feels far more like a generic off-the-shelf design from China than most of the well thought-out cases we’ve tested at the $30 level. In our view, whatever good has been added to this design from dermaSHOT is offset entirely by the price premium. Our hope is that Incipio continues to expand its lineup, but with more OVRMLD-style original and appealing designs, rather than forgettable ones like this.
Company and Price
Company: Incipio Technologies