First off, I want to thank the team at Incipio for giving me the opportunity to review a number of their latest products for the iPhone 5. This particular review will be focusing on the Incipio Stoway case. This is the second installment in a series of Incipio accessory reviews.
The one sent to me is a dual colored white and blue case with the standard rubbery plastic materials you will find in most cases these days. It's one piece and the iPhone is simply squeezed into place. It's a pretty tight fit (though not the tightest I have seen, Speck wins that award) that fully protects the sides and rear of the phone. The front side has a lip that protects from minor abrasions to the front of the device were it to be placed upside down. True drop testing did not take place but I believe this case could take a minor tumble or two depending on the hardness of the surface it was dropped on. Ports are open to the silencer switch, headphone jack and speakers. The case offers full volume and power button functionality through the case. What is unique about this case is the hidden storage compartment in the back of the case.
The storage compartment is where this device shines as it hides 2 or 3 of your credit or identification cards in a way that is practically invisible to others. While there are competitors that offer these same storage options, it is not done in a way that is descrete and secure. This case represents the best of both worlds in terms of meshing a slim design profile while giving you the option to leave your wallet at home. With this open/shut door design, I do have to question what wear and tear frequent opening and closing would do over long term usage. However in my 2 week test, it held up fine.
This case is extremely pocketable due to it's minimal design and smooth surfaces. It's not a lint magnet nor does it attract fingerprints. However, it is prone to minor cosmetic abrasions which you can see under bright lights. I have also noticed color transfer from my black pants onto the case giving it a "dirty" look. These trade offs were expected as I have experienced the same issues with other cases made using the same materials.
The package the case came in included a clear screen protector and cleaning cloth as well as a back piece that will prevent the credit cards from scratching the rear of the phone.
For the first several days I used this case, I received an obscene and unexpected amount of compliments. I'm not sure if it was the white and turquoise color combination or the "WOW" factor of the hidden storage compartment but it did receive high praise from strangers.
The bottom line? I would be concerned about the wear and tear of this case over time. But the strengths of this case make it the perfect accessory for those looking for a colorful eye-catching case solution for their iPhone that offers mild protection combined with the ultimate in discrete credit card storage. The Incipio Stowaway retails for $34.99.