Review: OtterBox Defender Case for Samsung Galaxy Note

20120629_182402A couple of weeks ago I received the OtterBox Defender Case for my Samsung Galaxy Note, this oversized Smartphone/Tablet needed some serious protection so wanted to see what the Defender Case could do that the Commuter Case didn’t and to see what added bulk this case might add.

Now normally I try and get my reviews done within a few days of getting the review unit, however I really felt I needed to test this case a lot more to see if I really could use this larger case as my main case for the Note, so read on to see some up close pics and get my thoughts on protecting your new Samsung Galaxy Note from bumps, knocks and much more…

 

PROTECTION

The case is made up of three main parts a Plastic bottom, Plastic top and Silicone Cover. The plastic internal cases clip together, which is then covered by the Silicone case? By having the plastic case internally gives you further protection than the Commuter case. The Defender case also comes with a plastic belt holster.

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Top Plastic Case with built in screen protector Bottom Plastic case, clips together with top part
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Silicone Case, fits around the Plastic hard case Hard Plastic Holster that the Defender case clips into.. has 360 turning belt clip.

STYLE AND ACCESSABILITY

The case is classic black, which some people may find boring, whereas I just love the simple sleek look, it looks very sturdy and strong. It does add some bulk to the phone but for me it wasn’t a deal breaker.

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Front speaker, Sensors and front facing Camera are protected with hard plastic edges… Plastic clip dome, this is on both sides of the case which clips into the supplied Holster…
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Volume keys are fully protected… As is the Power key on the right side…
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At the top the noise cancelling mic is open and the Headphone jack port is cover, what is great about this is there is a very hard plastic edge around the Jack port. As with the Top the Bottom is also well protected namely the Micro USB Charging port. The S-Pen is fully open giving great ease of use when pulling out the S-Pen. Microphone and back speaker are also open.
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Close up of the USB Charging port… Close up of S-Pen…
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Showing you how easy it is to take out the S-Pen… S-Pen is now pulled out…
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Camera and Flash are also surrounded by hard plastic protection… As I stated above the Defender Series cases come with a Screen Protector already built into the case, with this in mind you will find the Home Button is also covered, at first it took a little bit to get used to these as it gave a different textile feel…
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With the Case on you can still Charge your device…

USABILITY

I had previously used the Defender series case for my Old Dell Streak (R.I.P), and originally found it a bit harder to use than the Commuter series, so was trying to see if there was a difference with the Notes Defender Case, below you will find some of the places I tried the case and how I found the case went.

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AT HOME
Some would say that it’s really not that important an area to be over zealous in regards to the protection of your beloved device, however I think this would in fact be the main one, well for me it is as I have three kids aged 11, 9 and 4.5 so can have a wide range of oops and near misses.

One thing I found I used a lot at home was the Belt holster, which surprised me a lot as I had used the holster for the Dell Streak a small amount of time and wasn’t too into using, unlike I did with my HTC HD2 holster, just was a great way to carry it around, not saying I couldn’t carry it in my pocket on the contrary I could and can carry it in my work Jeans, my Levis Jeans (smaller pockets than my black work Jeans), shorts and even my track pants.

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AT WORK
I work in a very busy Mobile Retail Store and used it for a for a few days, with loads of customers and moving around the store I was again surprised with how light weight the holster was even with the Note in it and no real bumps or knocks.

I worked yesterday and had started using the Note with the Defender Case in my pocket but after a few minutes grab the Holster and used that for the rest of the day, was comfortable working at the Computer sitting on a stool, and out back sitting in a chair, didn’t need to keep moving it or adjust it in any way.

Maps-alt ON THE TRAIN
I no longer work in Perth so don’t use the train like I used to, so was great when I had to go into Perth CBD for some training and was able to test the Defender Case and Holster on the 30 min ride in. Again sitting down on the train or moving around it the train was easy and not awkward in any way. With the ability to rotate it from Portrait to Landscape depending on the situation.
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DRIVING
As with the train ride driving is pretty similar however with the adding of the seat belt pressing against the Holster can feel a bit weird, but got over that pretty fast, I would only drive with Note in the Holster if I was using my Bluetooth headset other wise it is out of the Holster on the centre console. (Still waiting on my car holder that will fit the Note with the case on… Hint.. Hint OtterBox)

 Icons are TouchIT HD visit mactheme.net

THE HAND HAS IT

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Ok for me the Note is note really a huge phone for me to use as I do have quite large hands, where as the major user may not so here are some of the People that have used my phone with the Defender case on…

  • MY WIFE – “I did find it a bit awkward at first but, was ok for me to use it for short times, was pretty surprised how well the case fitted the phone and it looked great…”
  • MY KIDS – “My dad lets me to get his phone if he has left it the dinning room and or lounge, I feel safe know that it is really protected and that he trust me to get it…”
  • MY MOTHER IN-LAW – “I use my son in-laws phone to call my brother in London via Skype and found the case was soft and had great feel to it, gave me secure grip also.”

OUT COME
Well after almost 3 weeks using the case I can say that it’s here to stay, I even took it off the other day to put the Commuter Case back on it and only after a few minutes took it off and put the Defender Case back on it. For me the Protection that this case brings to the Note is just awesome I feel that much more secure knowing that I have some serious Protection on it. I hope to see OtterBox move their Armor Series onto these devices, I can tell you now that if OtterBox bought at the Armor Series case for the Samsung Galaxy Note or S III then it would be a HUGE winner… Lets share some of that Tough Case love to us Android users.

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To find out more head over to www.otterbox.com and find a case for your device today or click here for the OtterBox Defender Case for Samsung Galaxy Note for $59.95…

About Jason McIsaac

Jason has been using mobile devices for the past 12 years starting with the WinMo iPaq 1700 series PDA them moving through to conversion devices like the PPC-6600/6700 and also an Axim X51v, Jason has been working in the Telco industry for the past 8 years including Mobile Service Centre and Retail. He is now a Channel Rep for Mobile Manufacture. His current devices are the Samsung Note 2, Samsung Galaxy S3 4G, Samsung Galaxy S3 3G, Samsung Galaxy Note, Samsung Note 10.1, he also has the Samsung Mini 2, HTC Legend, HTC Sensation, iPad 2 3G, iPad 1 3G, iPhone 3G 16GB & an iPod Touch 16GB (1st Gen) in the house. Jason also enjoys reviewing products & being involved with technology. See Jason's Articles [HERE]