The Incase Slider for iPhone 3G is the latest case from the company that offers an assortment of laptop and iPhone cases. It’s composed of two pieces of hard plastic that when joined together form a hard case for the iPhone 3G. I found the design to be in keeping with the overall look and feel of the iPhone 3G. Not unlike the iPhone, the Incase Slider features tapered edges keeping the overall style of the phone. Even the cutouts are well done, as they angle inward. A small incase insignia graces the back of the case and I didn’t mind since it’s actually a pretty nice logo. It would be pretty cool if they were to offer a version with a cutout of the Apple logo, but then it would be susceptible to scratches and that I guess defeats the purpose of buying a case in the first place.
In terms of quality, it’s the refinements mentioned above that make the build quality excellent on the Slider. While detractors will write it off as “two pieces of plastic”, that would be selling the Slider short. The black matte has a smooth finish and the interior has built-in rubberized guides to help you insert the iPhone 3G and I would imagine help protect against scratches when either inserting or removing the iPhone from the Slider. The case is also available in a glossy white, which begs to ask the question, “Why not offer a black glossy option?”
I had installed the Invisible Shield on my iPhone 3G and attempted to place the Incase Slider over the Invisible Shield. I highly recommend against this practice. While in theory, you’d have the best of both worlds (industrial strength scratch protection and protection from drops), Incase designed the Slider to fit perfectly over the iPhone 3G. Even the smallest amount of changes to the specs of my iPhone 3G made it difficult to install the Slider over the Shield. While I only tested with the Invisible Shield, I’d venture to say this would be the same for most body skins. What’s worse, it took me a good 2 hours to remove the Slider and I almost incurred damage to my iPhone 3G as a result. With the Invisible Shield removed, the fit of the Incase Slider is perfect. It’s not too tight, but I don’t suspect it would completely shatter should I drop the iPhone. It’s also easily removed, should you want to polish your iPhone 3G or you are the type to switch cases.
Since all ports are accessible, usability on the iPhone 3G is no different with the Slider case than if you had no case at all. While some cases claim full accessibility, the cutouts aren’t always ideal. I had no issue accessing all of my ports and at no time did the case hinder my accessibility to them. Note, I do not currently own a dock for the iPhone 3G, but the bottom piece of the slider is easily removed if you should need to dock your 3G. If you are looking for a case that you can dock with any sort of removal, this case is not for you.
Sure, it’s hard to justify $34.95 plus for what appears to be two pieces of plastic, but we’re not judging purely based upon cost of materials. The Incase Slider is not only an attractive, well-built case, but the beauty is in the details. I’m sure there are plenty of cases for significantly less, but I found the fit and finish of the Slider to be worthy of the extra cost. If there is any complaint, it’s the lack of a black glossy version. Otherwise, I highly recommend the Slider.
The Incase Slider retails for $34.95 and is available at either goincase.com or your local Apple Store.