LifeProof Fre Waterproof Case for iPhone 6/6s Review

Introduction

Being an outdoor person, I am a big fan of waterproof gear. This was the biggest reason why I bought the original Sony Xperia Z. Oh and also to let my mates dip it into fresh water streams. But for the iPhone, it was merely to protect my investment when I went on hikes or trips that had some aspect of water in it.

Design

Let’s face it, the only reason why one would buy the LifeProof Fre case is for its waterproof capability. However, there is one important point that I would like to make about the design and that is; even though the case is specifically designed for the iPhone 6S. The camera area of the case fits a bit too tight and over time will damage the antenna of the device. See below photo of what happened to my iPhone 6s:

Figure a. Close-up of damage to iPhone 6S.

Performance

I haven’t the heart to put my iPhone 6S in the water even with the case on. So cannot comment on its real waterproofing capability. However, I have done the empty case test and the case is water-tight. And have been using the phone in the rain, etc. with no problems.

Build Quality

The case is made of hard plastic and feels solid when you hold it. But I cannot imagine the case lasting or providing much protection if it is dropped on concrete/similarly hard surfaces.

Conclusion

After the antenna issue I experienced. I stopped using the case and would not recommend anyone bother with buying any waterproof case. As none of the vendors cover damage done to your device due to failings caused by their products – so it is no different than having a non-waterproof case. Well, maybe a couple of differences; 1 – waterproof cases are much chunkier/bulkier, and 2 – waterproof cases prevent direct access to the screen, meaning a less responsive touchscreen.

Finally, as shown in many YouTube videos like this video by zeedude, the iPhone 6S is pretty well sealed. Rendering the need for a purpose-built waterproof case.

Product Photos

Figure 1. Top side of packaging.
Figure 2. Bottom side of packaging.
Figure 3. Back of case showing important notice.
Figure 4. All the contents of the packaging.
Figure 5. Case submerged in water, held in place by the weight of a bowl.

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