The iPhone 5 is a beautiful slab of aluminum, so it stands to reason that many customers are looking for a case that provides protection and at the same time, doesn’t hide it. Clear cases and to a lesser extent translucent cases do just that and there’s a new entry in this category from Poetic. It’s thin, lightweight and the translucent casing allows the Apple logo show through. It’s got plenty going for it, but is it worthy of protecting your iPhone 5. Read on for our full Poetic Atmosphere Case for iPhone 5 review.
The Atmosphere case is manufactured using a combination of polycarbonate and thermoplastic polyurethane. The backing is a durable hard material that is for the most part transparent. The borders of the case uses ‘TPU dual injection’, which sounds good, even if I’m not sure what it means. The TPU dual injection makes for a rubberized look and feel around the edges.
The Poetic Atmosphere case is easy to install. Sliding the top of the iPhone 5 into the shell allows you to easily snap it into place. The overall fit is very good and felt solid. No movement at all that I could detect between the case and the iPhone. This is a minimal case design and certainly achieves that goal.
The rubberized thermoplastic material completely covers the power and volume buttons. These work quite well and I couldn’t notice a difference between a bare iPhone 5 and with the case installed. Other than the nano SIM slot, all ports are accessible. I’ve found on some cases, the mute switch is tough to access, but that’s not the case here. The thin form factor of the Poetic Atmosphere case allows you to easily adjust it. The are surrounding the lightning dock connector is wider than on most cases, but I was unable to test with a 30-pin to Lightning connector. This case has a drawback, which might be a positive for some. The TPU material at the bottom below the home button does not provide a snug fit, at all. The rest of the case is bonded by the polycarbonate, but not this area and it’s noticeable. Any time you come in contact with that bottom border, it feels floppy, like a defect.
The cutout around the camera is unnecessarily large. It in no way matches the design of the iPhone 5 and exposes part of the aluminum. This looks bad and fails to protect a part of the aluminum backing. I cannot think of a good reason as to why they chose this design. On three corners, the TPU emerges from the corners to attach to the shell. Not sure if this is a design decision, a bad one at that, or simply part of the construction that holds the materials together to form a bond to hold it together.
The polycarbonate back is durable for sure, but will produce an odd rainbow effect in different lighting. It’s got a slippery feel to it, which could spell problems for keeping a good grip on your iPhone. The Poetic brand is here, but they’ve done a good job of not making it look gaudy. There is no padding on the interior, so no shock absorption to act as a buffer between casing and iPhone 5 during a drop.
On the front, there is a slightly raised bezel, just enough so that your screen is not hitting the surface if placed face down. This of course can easily be avoided by breaking that habit. Your iPhone will thank you.
- Durable scratch protection
- Bottom border of case does provide for a tight fit
- Uninspiring design choices
- Casing is slippery
The Atmosphere case from Poetic manages to meet most of the criteria for those looking for a minimal case design that showcases the iPhone. It’s durable, inexpensive and lightweight. There are a number of questionable design decisions, which impact the look and feel of the case. The loose fitting at the bottom border below the home button is problematic, unless you are absolutely committed to finding a case that can ‘modified’ to fit 30-pin to Lightning connectors.
The MSRP of Atmosphere Poetic case is $24.99 and comes in assortment of colors including clear/pink, clear/grey, clear/purple, clear/white, clear/red. They are sold regularly on Amazon for $12.95, which is about half the retail price and about in line with the overall value of this case.