Works With: iPhone 5
Regular readers will know how much I dislike iPad cases, and that I only ever subject my iPhone to the confines of a miniature straitjacket. They’ll also know that I’m a big fan of Skech cases in general. So what happened when Skech sent me some leathery iPhone covers to try out?
Surprise! I (quite) liked them.
The cases are exactly what I have come to expect from Skech: impossibly light, thin and tough.
The covers are the Lisso and Lisso book, all but identical except that the Book has a front cover. Both are made from real leather, both have cut-outs for all switches, ports and cameras, and both have a slot in the back for a credit card and/or a bit of cash. That makes them sound bulky, but the fact is, they’re not. Not at all. The empty Lisso book weighs in at just 38 grams, the plain Lisso is 27 grams, and the Lisso plus iPhone plus €20 note plus one credit card is a mere 142 grams.
In short, they’re exactly what I have come to expect from Skech: impossibly light, thin, tough and with some interesting design decisions. That’s not to say it’s all good.
What It Is
The cases are made of Good Leather. I have no idea if it comes from calves with double-barrelled names, or if it was hacked off the back of your Big Mac, but it is both tough and yielding, and has the feel of leather that will get better with age. Age should also make it a little easier to get the iPhone out — right now it’s a tight but not scary fit.
In terms of design, there’s a cutout for the camera and flash, as well as for the mute switch. The top is completely open (and the entry-exit route for the iPhone 5 within), and the bottom edge is open but with straps to stop the phone from slipping out. As if it could. The volume buttons are covered, but the leather along the edge is soft enough that you can press them through it quite easily. There are even a couple of embossed symbols to let you know where they are.
The rear of the case is double-thickness, and sandwiches a rigid but thin layer of something inside it. The front part, which covers the bezel, is also rigid and raised slightly. The Lisso Book adds a stiff cover which closes with a magnet.
The best part of this case is that it mostly disappears. The brown Lisso looks great on the white iPhone 5, but when it’s in a jeans front pocket it slides in an out easily, and doesn’t feel much thicker than the naked phone. The stiff bezel also offers some protection to the phone’s screen, keeping it off the desktop or whatever when you put it face down.
The best part of this case is that it mostly disappears.
The money/card slot is equally well-thought-out. The ends of the single slit are punched circles to prevent tearing, and the cards or cash slide most of the way in, nestled between the two layers of the case back.
I have never liked wallet cases. I don’t carry much in my wallet — I own no store cards, and no credit cards, and I don’t keep a bunch of crap in there. But I do have a wallet with a pocket for change, which rules out any iPhone wallet I have ever seen.
But with the Lisso, I kinda like being able to keep a note with the phone. It certainly makes bikes rides a little less cluttered.
There’s not much wrong with these cases, but the single problem is an annoying one.
There’s not much wrong with these Lissos, but the single problem is pretty annoying. The bezel-covering front panel has too-small of a hole for comfort. Visually it crowds the screen, making you feel that the edge of it is being covered, even though it’s not. Physically it doesn’t manifest itself until your start typing, when the case makes it difficult to tap the keys at the edge of the keyboard.
It’s possible that this might improve over time, as the case softens, but I don’t think so 00 the rigid frame seems like it’s designed to stay that way.
On the one hand, the Lisso is one of the only cases that I don’t want to take off like a dog tries to shed one of those plastic cone-shaped torture-collars. It’s slim, it doesn’t get in the way of taking photos (the flapless version, at least) and it will only improve with age. But not being able to type is kind of a pain.
Should you buy it? Who knows? That really depends on your priorities. Is a super-slim, hold-it-all wallet worth more to you than easy, unencumbered typing? You’ll have to decide.
|Product Name: : Lisso/Lisso BookThe Good: Impossibly thin and light, great looking, ages like fine wine.The Bad: Bezel gets in the way of typing.
The Verdict Get it if you’re not going to be writing a book, and if you usually hate cases.