OtterBox iPhone 5s Case Review: Defender Series
The OtterBox iPhone 5s case is brand new for the iPhone 5s to support the Touch ID fingerprint sensor as well as the new gestures in iOS 7. Even if you have the iPhone 5, I recommend buying the iPhone 5s OtterBox case for the best iOS 7 ready rugged case.
There are many OtterBox iPhone 5s cases, but today we will look at the top end, Defender Series which offers the most protection and includes a belt clip holster option for users who need to carry the iPhone 5s on a belt, bag or securely in a pocket.
Read: Best iPhone 5s Cases
The Defender Series OtterBox iPhone 5s case delivers multiple layers of protection while still leaving access to the features iPhone owners want to use while keeping their device safe.
The OtterBox iPhone 5s case includes a polycarbonate inner layer with a padded interior that clasps into place on the iPhone 5s. This includes a built-in screen protector that does not need applied with any solutions and does not impact the usability of the display. Next up is a silicone band that covers the back, edged and adds a bumper to the front to protect against drops. Users can then clip this into a belt holster if desired.
The iPhone 5 case fits the iPhone 5s, but it covers the home button, rendering Touch ID useless. The new OtterBox iPhone 5s case features a cutout for the home button, which allows users to maintain full use of the new iPhone. During my time using the new OtterBox iPhone 5s case this cutout works great for allowing access to the fingerprint unlock feature and it is much easier to use the Control Center on iOS 7.
OtterBox offers a lot of color choices for the iPhone 5s Defender Series case with eight outer color options and nine inner layer options ranging from black, white and gray to pink, blue, orange and yellow.
The OtterBox iPhone 5s case about doubles the thickness of the device, but it is still pocketable, and the added thickness does help prevent damage from drops and scratches from daily use. Small silicone flaps cover the Lightning port, headphone port and mute switch. They are easy to open for use, but some “L” shaped headphone connections will not fit in the small opening. Apple’s headphones and most with a straight connection fit fine.
I initially had a small gap on the iPhone 5s OtterBox Defender Series, down near the home button, but after massaging the silicone part into the inner part correctly it now offers a tight fit without any gap.
The speakers, sensors and microphones are not covered by the case in any way, so making calls, listening to music and taking photos or videos and similar activities are not affected.
Overall the OtterBox iPhone 5s case is one of the best rugged iPhone 5s case options available, and perhaps the only one that works with Touch ID at this point. Competing cases designed for the iPhone 5 still cover the home button, which removes one of the best iPhone 5s features.
The OtterBox iPhone 5s case Defender Series starts at $49.99 from OtterBox. Add $10 for color options. Many third-party retailers don’t sell the OtterBox iPhone 5s case yet, so if you order online or by locally, look for one with an opening on the home button.