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Wetsuit and Bone Guard by Dog & Bone for iPhone 6 Plus Review
      #48242 - 07/02/15 03:30 PM

The Wetsuit by Dog and Bone is a rugged (MIL STD 810F) waterproof (IP 68) case for the iPhone 6 Plus that doesn't utilize a screen cover.

For the last two weeks, I've made the Wetsuit my everyday case for my iPhone 6 Plus. After all, it's summer, which means a lot of time out of doors and around water, and I found myself spending more time swapping out cases than I liked. Although I found the Wetsuit to be a bit heavier than my other daily-use case, I am happy to report that its increased level of protection didn't really get in the way of my talking, texting, gaming, watching or internetting.



The Wetsuit's claim to fame is its ability to provide true waterproof protection without utilizing a screen cover. It manages this by creating a waterproof seal against the edge of your phone's glass display so if your screen is cracked this type of protection is not for you. Also, like all waterproof cases that use this design, it is only rated to 2 meters (IP 68 certified) so don't go diving or even snorkeling with it. Why not snorkel? Because this rating is not necessarily for depth, but for the case's ability to withstand a pressure equivalent to what it would experience at the rated depth, which you can easily create at the surface simply by moving your phone rapidly through the water. In my review of the iPhone 5/5s version, I faulted the Wetsuit due to the difficulty I encountered using touch ID. However, this may have been more Apple's fault than Dog & Bone's because I have encountered no such difficulty with my 6 Plus, possibly thanks to Apple's improved fingerprint sensor/algorithm. Unlike most waterproof cases, the Wetsuit also does its best to protect your phone from significant drops. Each corner is reinforced and protected with a rubbery guard, and the waterproof inner boot itself is also thick and designed for shock absorption. All of this adds up to a MIL STD 810F rating, which it achieved by withstanding repeated 6 ft. drops onto plywood-covered concrete at every possible angle. Very welcome, indeed. There are lots of thoughtful design touches to the Wetsuit, something I noticed only after significant use. For example, the gasket-lined Lightning Port cover is hinged so it won't wear out, and the port is wide enough to accommodate 3rd party charge cables, which tend to be a bit larger than Apple's. The headphone jack cover is not hinged, so may wear out faster. However, Dog & Bone has included a second one in every box. Of course, this means that it's easily removable and can therefore be lost, so pay attention when the case is disassembled (it can't come out once it's installed). Just be aware that accessing either of these ports will defeat the case's waterproof seal so don't try to charge it or listen with headphones while you're around or in water. For a waterproof case, the sound quality is surprisingly good, both for making calls and general audio output. Certain sounds can still cause the waterproof membrane to vibrate like a kazoo. Rest assured, however, this is not an issue you will notice except in very rare cases.



If you are a bit nervous at the thought of exposing your iPhone's glass screen to water, Dog & Bone also makes a product called Bone Guard, which is a tempered glass screen protector specifically designed to work with the Wetsuit. It is simple to install, thanks to the fact that it's a rigid piece of glass and not a floppy piece of plastic like most screen protectors. It also feels exactly like the iPhone's own screen, right down to the oleophobic coating. If you intend to take your device to the beach, I can't recommend this strongly enough. As I've noted in previous reviews, sand contains quartz, which is one of the few things your phone may encounter during regular use that is capable of scratching its screen. While the Bone Guard is also susceptible to scratching, unlike your phone's touchscreen, it's easily replaceable. If you're going to take your phone to the beach, either be very careful, or pick up a Bone Guard when you buy your Wetsuit.

Lastly, regarding size, the Wetsuit will approximately double the weight and thickness of your iPhone 6 Plus, but won't add significantly to its width or length. To install, use the provided pry tool to open it, insert your phone into the inner silicone "wetsuit," then snap closed. Once installed, you will still have full access to all ports, switches, etc. Even the camera and flash work flawlessly.

The Wetsuit is available in black/black, orange/black, and white/grey.



Summary

The Wetsuit for iPhone 6 Plus is the best waterproof case you can buy. Waterproof, serious drop protection, style, and accessible enough for daily use; The Wetsuit is the one to beat.

Editor's Ratings (1-5): 5
What's Hot: True waterproof protection without a screen cover. Reinforced corners provide significant drop protection.
What's Not: Guard surrounding home button can get in the way of navigating around the bottom of the screen.
Price: $89.95
Web site: Dog and Bone Cases

Reviewed by: Tom Slayton







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