HTC have only recently released the HTC Desire Eye handset and already OtterBox, the number one smartphone case manufacturer in the USA, are releasing a Defender Series case for the handset. I’ll write about the Desire Eye first, as this is something of an unconventional device. It’s similar to the HTC One M8 ‘phone but has been tweaked. The M8 has a 4 MP rear facing UltraPixel camera and a 5 MP front facing camera for selfies; the HTC Desire Eye has a 13 MP rear facing camera… and a 13 MP front facing camera. It has a 5.2-inch, 1080p display (the M8 uses a 5.0-inch screen), 2 GB of RAM supporting a 2.3 GHz quad core Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor (the same as the M8 for most markets, although some Asian models come with a 2.5 GHz Snapdragon 801). There’s 16 GB of internal storage plus a MicroSD card slot that supports cards up to 128 GB in capacity. And under the skin there’s a 2,400 mAh battery, slightly smaller than the M8’s 2,600 mAh. One respectable improvement is that the Desire Eye is IPX7 certified for dust and water resistance and the Desire Eye has a modified version of HTC’s BoomSound, using physically smaller speakers.
The OtterBox Defender Series of case is a multi-layered shell consisting of polycarbonate and a shock-absorbing silicone cover. Each particular case is designed to fit that particular model – in this case, the Desire Eye – and many include a combined media stand / holster style belt clip. The case isn’t designed to be water resistant, but in the case of the Desire Eye this device is already water resistant so it doesn’t matter so much. OtterBox are a private company, founded in 1998 and based in Colorado.
Cases are an interesting discussion point for many smartphone users. The manufacturer invests time and money in giving their product a look and feel, which is a part of the experience, then we go and put the device into a much cheaper case in the interests of keeping it safe. Some manufacturers design and sell cases to go alongside their devices, to complement the device. If you want the best protection you usually have to compromise in some respects: typically in bulk, or how the device feels in the hand. OtterBox has been so successful because their devices are a better compromise than most others.