iPhone 4 Case Review: Shark Eye Case for iPhone 4 (Verizon and ATT) Reviewed by Tom Slayton
Editor's Ratings (1-5): 4.5
What's Hot: Retractable screen protector. High quality holster. Installs/uninstalls in seconds.
What's Not: No outer silicone skin. Not everybody will need this level of screen protection
The Shark Eye for iPhone 4 is a rugged case with a signature feature: a retractable screen protector. With the flick of your thumb, you can protect your iPhone screen from scrapes, scratches, and debris; and with another flick, have full access to it. The cover is semi-opaque, allowing you to see what's on the screen, although you can't access it in any way without retracting it. The case also comes with a surprisingly high-quality holster.
The Shark Eye case fits the iPhone 4 perfectly. In order to accommodate a retractable screen cover, the folks at Shark Eye have designed their case to hold your iPhone in place with soft, foamy rubber bumpers at either end. This allows the screen protector to function without rubbing against your phone as it opens and closes, and provides a certain degree of shock absorption. The system works quite well, and I didn?t notice any indication that the cover was coming into chronic contact with my phone, although I?m sure light, occasional contact is almost unavoidable. While the Shark Eye case isn?t overly bulky, it isn?t going to win any awards for being svelte, either. This is a fair tradeoff for the level of protection it provides.
It?s obvious that a great deal of time and energy went into engineering the retractable screen cover, and to my knowledge, The Shark Eye Case is the only case of its kind on the market. If you are somebody who tosses your phone in a purse or backpack, or stuffs it in the same pocket as your keys, this is exactly what you need. If you intend to use the included holster, however, or don?t generally abuse your phone, this may be too much protection for you. The case itself is well-designed, and made of thick, high-quality plastic. The docking port and headphone jack both feature silicone caps, and the standby and volume buttons are completely covered. The mute switch and speakers are fully exposed, however. Lastly, the case can be installed/removed in seconds; no small feat for a rugged case like this one.
The Shark Eye provides excellent scratch/scuff/drop protection, but doesn?t provide quite as effective protection against moisture. When I first installed the case, I found myself a bit underwhelmed, and I couldn?t figure out why. After using it for a while, I determined that I prefer cases with an external silicone skin. I just like the way they feel. However, there are certain disadvantages to cases covered in silicone. First, they are prone to stretching, and often end up fitting loosely. Second, they are difficult to insert/remove from pockets; something that has caused me to spill pocket change more than once due to my knobby silicone-ensconced case turning my pocket inside-out upon removal. In the end, this may simply come down to personal preference as I can easily argue both positions.
The Shark Eye Case for iPhone 4 is a one-of-a-kind product. Its claim to fame is a retractable screen cover, which may or may not be exactly what you need. If you are among the throngs who toss your phone in with the rest of your possessions, it will provide unparalleled protection for your screen, and very good protection for the rest of your phone. The included holster, which is surprisingly substantial, is icing on the cake.