I received a couple of Linear Crystal (Satin Silver) and Linear Color (Lime and Champagne Gold) cases from SGP for my iPhone 4S recently and I’ve been feeling a little torn in attempting to reach a conclusion. Sure, the cases look great in pictures and feel pretty good in the hand, but they can be […]
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Review: SGP Linear Color and Crystal Cases for iPhone 4S

I received a couple of Linear Crystal (Satin Silver) and Linear Color (Lime and Champagne Gold) cases from SGP for my iPhone 4S recently and I’ve been feeling a little torn in attempting to reach a conclusion. Sure, the cases look great in pictures and feel pretty good in the hand, but they can be a real pain to put on…and they come off a little too easily.

Snap On

The only real difference between the Crystal and Color series of SGP (“Stylish people’s Good Partner”) cases is the feel of the plastic and the transparency of the back (Crystal cases have clear backs that show smudges; Color cases are coloured). Otherwise both of the case types in this review feature a similar setup, consisting of a two-piece plastic frame (a large top with a small cap for the bottom) and a back plate.

 

Installation is relatively simple in theory, as you simply have to hold the back plate against your iPhone 4S, slide the frame over it, and then click the pieces into place. The similar designs of the Crystal and Color series actually become an advantage when you own several cases, since you can mix and match colours as you please.

The trouble is that clicking everything into place isn’t always easy. In fact, the first couple of times I tried to do it, I thought the cases would simply never fit. Instead of sliding the bottom portion of the frame into the top, you actually have to bend and lift the bottom over it, which really isn’t terribly easy during the first few applications.

The included crystal screen protector that comes with each case was, by contrast, a walk in the park to apply. I wasn’t quite sure what to do with the extra lens and logo stickers that came with the Crystal case though. The logo sticker tended to bubble up against the clear back, and the lens sticker didn’t make any noticeable difference to me.

Ridges and Ports

The Linear Crystal and Color cases lack any sort of soft-touch finish so they can be a little slippery, but the ridge that the plastic frame adds to the entire iPhone makes the whole package easier to hold. It’s also worth mentioning that I had no trouble with earphones or ports – the only thing I couldn’t do with the SGP cases on was dock my iPhone.

Snap Off

The major downside of the Linear Color and Crystal series is a admittedly a bit of a coin toss because it has to do with drops. I had lent one of the Color cases to my sister to test while I used the Crystal and she experienced first-hand how these cases handle a fall. She dropped her iPhone from about four feet onto a wooden floor and had the whole case instantly fall apart, resulting in the bottom portion of the frame actually chipping the iPhone’s screen in the process.
To be fair, neither of these SGP cases is rated as having any major drop protection, but it’s also true that many people buy cases to prevent damage during drops – and the seal on these Linear SGP cases just doesn’t cut it in this regard.

Conclusion

These $25 SGP Linear Crystal and Color cases come with interesting extras (screen protectors and a few extra stickers of questionable utility), feel good in the hand, and feature interchangeable parts. However, the Linear cases do require a little more patience to install properly, and although they won’t break the bank, they haven’t proven to be very reliable for drops either. So if you’re the kind of “stylish good person” who fumbles their phone every now and then, that’s well worth keeping in mind.

The Linear Color and Crystal cases were provided by SGP for review on iSource. For further information regarding our site’s review policies, please see the “About” page.

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