Customer Reviews: Otterbox Defender Series Hybrid Case & Holster for iPhone 4 & 4S - Retail Packaging - Sun Yellow/Gunmetal Grey
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on August 9, 2012
You have to be real picky to notice this first one but I am so here we go. Although this is a good case and well worth the $20 I paid for it, its not perfect. The first issue I wont take any stars off for because its something the manufacturer dosent even claim and thats water resistance. It seems that with just a couple extra additions this case could be water resistant which would make it great rather than just good. As it is this case isn't even moisture or humidity resistant. If i keep it in the holster the heat from my body will cause enough condensation for it to get under the screen. A drop of water anywhere near this case and it somhow seems to make its way right insid the protective film. Real annoying.

The second issue is what I am deducting 2 stars for though. The case at first glance appears to be well constructed with good attention to detail. Upon closer inspection however you will notice the rubber gasket that surrounds the hard shell bulges out in some places and over laps in others. I guess with this kind of manufacturing its hard to stick within exact tolerances. There are places all around the case where it just dosent fit perfectly. There are even a couple areas where there is just a bit too much plastic on the hard case. I't probably wont keep the case from functioning but it is bothersome. Again, for $20 its a solid purchase but for the $50 the brick and mortar stores are charging for it I would have taken it right back.

Edit 8-11-12:

The day after I received the case I returned it for another one. The fact that it didn't fit just right was annoying me. Although it didn't really interfere with the case functioning it just bothered me when i looked at it. The replacement case came quickly. The box was the same but the case inside was anything but. The fit and finish of the 2nd case was well beyond the first. No bits of hanging plastic or bulges in the rubber covering. The screen protector was clearer the rubber fit tighter all around (especially near the openings) and the case felt more solid. The colors were noticeably different. The original looked as if it were faded. Lastly the spring in the belt clip of the 2nd one is much stronger than the first.

If I had not received the first case I would have given the 2nd one at least 4 stars. However, for Amazon sending either a fake or poorly manufactured one to me I'm giving it a 1. Hopefully anyone who gets a sub-par one will see my review and know to return it.
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on December 30, 2011
I purchased this particular phone case (shell, really) after having read several positive reviews. I compared it to several others and quickly discovered that this particular case is just that, a case...not some sort of sleeve or wrap. The case itself WILL hold up...I'm pretty tough on cell phones (outdoors, construction, etc.). The rubberized covering makes handling the iphone much easier, at least for me. Without it, it felt as though the phone would slip right through my fingers. What's more is the customer service dept. at Otterbox. Background: I'm a fan of having my phone on my side w/ a belt clip. Long story short, I managed to break the belt clip from the holster itself (not the case) one evening. Totally my fault. I called Otterbox Customer Service, told them exactly what happened and their response was, "let's get you a new one right away. what's your address so we can take care of this for you?" I was seriously blown away!!! Received the new holster/belt clip in 5 days. TOTALLY RECOMMEND THIS COMPANY AND THIS PARTICULAR PRODUCT!!!
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on November 2, 2012
This is a knock-off Otterbox. It is obviously a fraud. The box had no hologram and the packing inside was flimsy cardboard. More importantly, the case itself was made of cheap, brittle plastic and the rubber was micro-thin and would not stay shut. There was no Otterbox logo inside the case where it is on real boxes. This seller should not be allowed to sell these counterfeit Otterboxes any more. What junk!
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on October 23, 2012
This case appears to be a counterfeit OtterBox. The outer rubber skin does not fit properly, and it is difficult to close the flaps for the connector port, mute switch and headphone jack. The outer skin is bubbled on the back, and the screen opening is not shaped properly. I have since ordered another Realtree OtterBox Defender case, and it is a geniune, high-quality protective case.
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on June 15, 2012
Be very careful when you order to ensure you do not receive a counterfeit Otterbox. The packaging and several details on the iPhone case are different. Just compare one to walmarts and you will know right away if yours is the true Otterbox or counterfeit. I ordered mine directly from Amazon and its disappointing that they are letting this happen.

AFter looking at other reviews, I am not the only person that this has happened to.
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on October 18, 2012
This would be a 5-star review except for one glaring design problem...
I spend a lot of time hiking on Mt. Shasta, year round, and my iPhone needs protection from snow in the Winter, and from trail-dust the rest of the year. In addition, I wanted a case that offered some protection for the screen, should I drop it on something hard. This is the only case I've found that offers serious screen protection. Overall I'm happy with it - the hard case with the screen protection is surrounded by a rubbery cushion that's easy to grip securely. It does bulk up the dimensions of the phone a bit, but I don't see any way around that. It's a trade-off I'm willing to make to get the extra screen protection.

As others have noted, there's no way you can insert the phone in a dock when the case is on. And while I've removed the case every so often, mostly to clean the rubber part that can get grimy after many days on dusty trails, it takes enough time that you won't want to do if daily. And even if it didn't take so much time, it does stretch the rubber each time I do that so that it doesn't fit quite as tightly after several such stretching. So I wouldn't advise removing the phone from the case daily just to insert it into a dock. I did get one the (way more expensive than it should be!) dock extenders, but it raises the phone high enough in the dock to make me worried about torquing the connector in the dock enough to break it. So I just connect the phone through the device's mini-plug input...

The flaps that protect the headphone jack and the 'silence' switch at the upper left side of the phone still close securely after many openings to access those functions. BUT - this is my biggest complaint - the flap at the bottom of the case that's supposed to protect the charging connector has NEVER worked well. I think I got it to actually close tightly maybe 4 times total - and it took several minutes of fussing with it each time, so I never bothered after that. Eventually the flap developed a tear from repeated flexing in my pocket, so I cut it off, and ordered some of those (REALLY ridiculously overpriced!) silicone plugs for the dock connector. Of course since they're so small, it's easy to lose them. It would be much better if Otterbox could fix the currently-useless dock protector problem - then it would deserve the extra star!
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on May 15, 2012
I am pretty hard on my phones. I need a cover that will protect it and I truly found it with this Otterbox. I've tried many covers over the years and I have never seen anything like this one. I started hearing about Otterbox from some guys at work and found out they were pretty expensive to buy at the cell phone stores. I checked out Amazon and got an unbelievable deal on this and I couldn't be happier. I feel 100% confident that no matter what I do to my phone, it is protected. I did have to watch the video on Otterbox to see how to get the thing apart. The directions on the inside of the box were not easy for me to follow, but once I went to their website and watched a person take it apart and install it on their phone, it was quite easy. It does add a little bulk to your phone, but I am still able to put it in my back pocket. It does come with a very sturdy holster that you can clip onto your belt if you like to do that. There are openings for the cameras in the back and front, in the right places (doesn't obstruct view). The bottom of the phone is protected by plastic and rubber, and the rubber piece can be lifted up to dock or charge your phone. The "home button" is protected by rubber but is still very functional. The volume buttons on the side are also covered, but work easily through the rubber material. The headphone jack on the top is covered, but the rubber can be flipped up to insert your headphones. Finally, your screen is protected with the cover's built in clear plastic, so there's no real need to have an additional screen protector on your phone (unless you want one for when the cover isn't on). What more could you ask for?? I love this thing.
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on December 23, 2011
I've used this Otterbox case on my black iPhone 4s for two days and so far I'm very impressed. I've found many of the complaints by other reviewers only somewhat valid and was able to correct all the reported issues by paying attention to the details of this product. First I find the case well made and parts fit together tightly. The case is composed of two basic parts. An inner hard plastic case that opens to allow placing the iPhone inside and a rubber outer shell that serves to help hold the inner case closed, act as a shock absorber and it has little flaps that can be thumbed open to access the mute button, the earbud port and the 30 pin connecting port. There's also a separate belt clip included.

The inner hard case has several very nice features such as a foam pad along the back for shock absorption and to snug the iPhone in the case, and protective film over the front face of the phone and over the opening for the Apple logo on the back. I've had no trouble using gestures through the front film. I had a little difficulty getting the hard case open as there are several tiny side 'clamps' holding it together and my large fingers fumbled them. Once the iPhone was in the case it was a little difficult to close because of the tight fit. I had to take care to make sure each of the clamps locked into place. My iPhone has no room to move in this inner case. I suspect those few complaining of a loose fit didn't get the case completely closed and the clamps locked in place.

The outer soft rubber case appears well designed and durable. It's easy to get on the hard inner case but harder to fit because of close tolerances and I think this is where most negative reviewers have gone wrong. Several reviews mention that the flaps in the outer case won't stay closed and I noticed the same difficulty with mine at first. After putting on my reading glasses and taking a closer look I noticed that the outer case was just a hair off of square with the hard case. A tiny rotation of the outer case solved the problem. While doing this I noticed that the rubber case wasn't seated properly in several places as well. The edge of the rubber case fits into a tiny grove all around the hard case and under the edges of the clamps. You won't see your outer case isn't seated unless you look carefully. Again my large fingers (I'm not fat but 6'5" tall) had trouble manipulating the case edges into place. I made a tool by blunting a round wooden toothpick that worked very well for seating everything but took about ten minutes to get it done. Now the port flaps snap in and out of place crisply and stay put.

Another common complaint is that the hole in the case for the earbud port is in the wrong place. The problem is that the hole IS NOT intended for the earbud port. The hole at the top of the case is for the noise canceling microphone - that very tiny hole in your iPhone 4s that lines up perfectly with the hole in the case. This microphone picks up background noise and subtracts it from the voice microphone at the iPhone's base to clear up talk transmissions and so needs to be open all the time. The earbud port, which isn't used as often by most people, is kept under the flap that includes the noise canceling mic hole. Obviously this is an intentional design feature that some users have confused or perhaps the iPhone 4 doesn't have the noise canceling mic.

I read where this case covers the proximity sensor of white iPhones. Mine's black so I can't speak to this.

About the case's thickness. I've big hands so don't mind a little larger dimension on this phone. My old temporary case was a folding leather one I had on my old iPod touch and is exactly the same thickness on the phone as the Otterbox Defender so I'm used to carrying it around. Sure there are thinner cases out there but I don't care.

Lastly, about the belt clip. I find my Otterbox Defender fits very snuggly into this clip and I like that you can put it face in for extra protection of your front glass. In brief testing I couldn't get the phone to come out of the belt clip nor could I get the belt clip to fall off my belt. However, I like carrying my phone in my pocket and will rarely use it as intended. Instead I plan to remove (break) the belt clip from the case holder and use the holder for protecting my iPhone's front glass while in luggage or a brief case like when going through airport security.

I gave the case four instead of five stars due to the lack of directions. The directions consist of a series of tiny diagrams in the back of the box that just aren't sufficient. During my pre-purchase research I found that the Otterbox website as two very good videos about this case - one shows proper assembly. I suggest you check these out before assembling the case.
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on August 20, 2015
Excellent protection for my iphone4. (Yes, I still carry a 4) My first case for this phone was an Otterbox, but I upgraded after a while because I wanted a waterproof case. So I had the Lifeproof case for some time and it worked for what I needed. My grandson teethed with it, then as he grew he started pulling on the rubber tabs until it was no longer waterproof. Then I cracked the screen because I got careless with some machinery in my shop. I decided I needed screen protection more than water protection so I came back to Otterbox and I am so glad I did. The phone/case snaps into the holster on my belt to protect the screen from any damage just like I want. The holster fits tightly around the belt and there is no way it could possibly come off by accident. Some days it is a chore to get it off when I want to, so I know it's secure. I would much rather pay $25 for a phone case than $75 for another screen replacement. I wish I could have found the waterproof Otterbox case and holster, but that doesn't seem to be available anymore.
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on July 23, 2012
I would rate this product on two primary points: (1) the actual encasement for the phone . . . even though it's bulky, I needed the extra security that it provided. So, this was a trade-off that I thought was well worth it. I would actually rate this encasement a "5"; then there's the clip (2) this clip is only as strong as its weakest link . . . and that weak-link is the small snap-in-pin that keeps the "phone-clip" attached to the "belt-clip". (((The phone-clip holds the phone encasement to the belt-clip; which obviously attaches to one's belt))). This small snap-in-pin appears to be rather fragile and broke within a month of my using the case. So, now I have this bulky phone/encasement (w/ its rubber coating) and no way to carry it on my belt . . . and the only option is to carry it in my pocket . . . and as you might guess; it's awkward putting it into my pocket (w/ the rubber coating). Hence, I'd rate this clip a "1".

UPDATE: To be fair, I just received an email from Otterbox (around a week from the submission of my complaint) and instead of just providing me w/ a replacement pin . . . they appear to be sending me an entire new product (case & clipping system). This is more than I was expecting as I honestly would have been content w/ repairing mine. All that to say, this is excellent customer service . . . I don't run across this much . . .

My thanks to the Otterbox company.

Well, that's about it I suppose; hope this was helpful.
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