Monday, June 3, 2013

Otter Box Defender Series and Commuter Series Cases For The HTC One And Galaxy S III Review

It is now spring and summer is coming. That means that many of us are getting bit by the upgrade bug, and are eyeing new cell phones. For example, there is the new HTC One. And for bargain hunters, last year’s Samsung Galaxy S3 can be found for a good deal. But it doesn’t stop there. Your new investment needs protection. And when it comes to cases, they don’t get much better than Otter Box.
Like everything else, cases have also evolved. Their primary function is to protect. But now they also tend to add some style. Otter Box has also followed this trend. They still offer the same level of protection, but they offer them in different colors.
An example of this is their Defender case for the Samsung Galaxy S III case. The case encompasses a hard plastic inner case and a soft rubber shell. They offer both pieces in multiple colors, so you can choose your own color combination. Like all Otter Box products, the Defender Series Galaxy S III case came and the build quality was excellent. And the fit was perfect. It gave full functionality of the Galaxy S III as well as a high level of protection. About the only thing the Defender Series case is not, is water proof. It will protect against drops, but not a drop in a pool.

The same quality and protection is found in the Defender Series case for the HTC One. Only for the HTC One, I was sent both a Defender Series case as well as a Commuter Series case. So I got to really do a hands on comparison between the two. The color combinations are not as extensive as the Galaxy S III Defender series case, but they do have a few color combinations to choose from.
Features and Specs:
Commuter Series:
  • Limited 1-year warranty
  • Exterior shell is slick enough to easily slide in your pockets
  • All buttons and sensors are fully functional through the case
  • Silicone plugs provide access to all ports
  • All microphones are fully exposed for call clarity
  • Case allows for the use of camera and flash
  • Clear, self-adhering screen protector prevents scratches (comes with bubble squeegee and cleaning cloth)
  • Silicone inner layer absorbs bumps and shocks
  • Polycarbonate outer shell protects the device from impact
Weight & Dimensions:
  • Approximate Weight: 1.56oz / 44.45g
  • Approximate Dimensions: 5.65in x 2.97in x 0.60in / 143.67mm x 75.52mm x 15.30mm
Environmental Protection:
The Commuter Series case for the HTC One provides added protection against drops, shocks and dust intrusion but is NOT protective against water.
Defender Series:
  • Open access to all device features
  • All buttons are fully functional through the Defender Series for the HTC One
  • Power button is left exposed to allow for HTC’s additional functionality
  • All microphones are exposed for call clarity
  • All sensors are exposed through the case for full functionality
  • Front-facing speakers transmit sound through the case
  • 1-year warranty
  • Polycarbonate inner shell fits around the device to protect against impact
  • Built-in clear polycarbonate screen protector prevents scratches and dust intrusion
  • Silicone slipcover wraps around inner shell to absorb drops
  • Holster-style belt clip is included
Weight & Dimensions:
  • Approximate Weight: 4.49oz / 127g
  • Approximate Dimensions (without holster): 5.73in x 3.07in x 0.68in / 145.5mm x 77.9mm x 17.3mm
  • Approximate Dimensions (with holster): 5.92in x 3.43in x 1.45in / 150.5mm x 87.2mm x 36.8mm
Environmental Protection:
The Defender Series case provides added protection against bumps, drops and shocks but is NOT protective against water.
The Commuter Series case is a two piece case.  The 1st piece is a soft inner shell which is covered by the hard plastic 2nd piece.  It does not have the hard plastic belt clip holder that is included with the Defender Series.  And it also does not have the built-in screen protector of the Defender Series.  It does however come with a separate screen protector, so you have the added option of using your phone with or without the screen protector.  With the Defender Series, the screen protector is built-in.  While I am sure most would be glad the screen protected is built-in to the Defender Series......if you would prefer to not have a screen protector, that option is not available with the Defender Series.  You would have to modify it yourself and remove the built-in plastic screen protector.
So the Defender Series and Commuter Series have different option and features.  Depending on what protection you are looking for will determine which case you is right for you.  With either one, your phone will be perfectly protected.  No one wants to drop their phone.  And it has happened to me from time to time.  Fortunately my phone was Otter Box protected, which meant not a scratch on my phone.  Based on their design, features, quality, and performance, the Commuter Series case has earned our Highly Recommended Award, and the Defender Series case has earned our Editor's Choice Award.  If you are looking for a case for your phone, Otter Box should be on your short list.  Your phone will thank you.  For more info and complete specs, check out their website at