I’d been using an inexpensive full cover wallet case from Amazon. It was a whole $5. The full title of the product was Wallet Leather Case Credit ID Card slot Holder Cover Pouch For iPhone 4 4S Black. It worked pretty well for me and I got positive comments at a lot of checkout counters. Here’s a picture of it.
I used it and a one time replacement for it for 2 years with my iPhone 4s. I dropped my iPhone several times with no damage whatsoever.
The only problem with it was when I wanted to use my iPhone as a phone or to read a lot of blogs or twitter, it was a little bulky and the outer flap got in my way. It wasn’t a big problem, just annoying over time.
That let me to the Wally Case, $49. I found it before it was available and had to wait. It was a pretty exciting design.
It was definitely an improvement over the other case for using the phone and reading. It held the right number of credit cards and cash. The little strap worked beautifully.
Then I dropped my iPhone and the weakest corner broke off. This was not just a crack. I realized then that the case was one of those cheapies that you can get for a buck or so on Amazon. That was around 6 weeks after I bought the Wally Case. But I wasn’t disappointed because I realized that the design had another flaw. The light brown leather discolored, as light brown leather will, and it no longer matched the elegance of the iPhone 5s. That’s the deepest flaw of the model I purchased.
Then a surprise came my way. DistillUnion made an offer to replace Wally Cases for the price of shipping. That was really class from DistillUnion. I don’t know too many companies that would do that. So I ordered the black one. Still, I’m not going to use it. Why?
I realized that for reading on my iPhone and using the phone I only wanted a clear case. I didn’t want any extra bulk at all. I bought slim wallet pictured below called AlpineSwiss Leather Card Case Wallet Slim Super Thin 5 Card Slots Front Pocket. It was only around $11 shipping included. (Why are some product names on Amazon so long?)
Then I came to the obvious realization that I don’t use the phone and the wallet at the same time.
This is important. The wallet and the iPhone really aren’t the same thing, duh.
I do look forward to Apple’s implementation of securely using the iPhone like a credit card some day. (And no, I don’t believe NFC is ever going to be secure enough for me.)
Of course, by then the iPhone will be as slim as the Alpine Swiss wallet above. ☺
So I finally turned to Amazon again and picked up a cheap hard case for my iPhone. It’s nothing special. But it lets the elegance of my iPhone shine.
It’s only $8 bucks. There are some, like Moshi’s clear case, that cost in the $20 range. I just think that’s unnecessary.
Distill Union also sells a Wally Stick-On, $39, and that’s what I’d recommend you get if the Wally Case looks like something you’d use. The Wally Stick-On is re-usable if your case breaks. At least that’s the theory. I haven’t tried it.
Anyway, that’s my Wally Case story. I found that little experience interesting from a design perspective, but that’s why I do these kinds of product experiments. I wish DistillUnion well. They have my goodwill forever. And I will be keeping an eye out for future products there.