Today’s case up for review is the Palm Hard Case for the 700wx ($29.95), which I’ve had now for 12 months, so I feel quite qualified in my judgment. Believe it or not, Palm actually tends to release pretty good accessories for their devices, but as usual for a more premium cost. In this situation, I really like the Palm Hard Case and it is my number one choice to carry my 700wx around it. That does not mean however it is a perfect accessory...
Read on for the full review!
The Palm Hard Case is made from a very hard yet light plastic composite. The outside has that rubberized feel to it, while the inside has a very soft lining to protect the device form scratches. Its jet black and non-glossy appearance give it a svelte look that I think looks great, sans the Palm logo. There is a single hole for the antenna to stick out and the case itself fits the phone perfectly. Of course this results in a one-way orientation for the device, with the antenna facing forwards. The belt clip is removable and made from a thin but durable metal -- as is the latch to open the case. There are no holes for the bottom of the device, meaning you won’t be able to use your headphones and this case at the same time -- then again you’ve already moved on to Stereo Bluetooth, right? ;-)
I would put the build quality and customization for this case quite high, except for the latch (which I will address below).
How it holds up
The case is very sturdy and also has a very thin profile. The latter is particularly important if you don’t like wearing hip holsters for your phone, but have to if you use the 700wx. I find that this case has the lowest profile that I’ve experienced so far. You still feel it, but it doesn’t stick out from you hip as much as some other cases. This is in part due to the thin construction of the case and also the super slim (and removable) belt clip. The sturdiness of the case is also top notch—you can feel free to bump into corners and bang into things and not have to worry at all about the phone. The case does not scratch easy but instead gets little streaks in the rubber which from my experience is not that bad.
The way the phone sits in the case is interesting as you insert it with the screen facing up (antenna forward). This is nice if you keep it on your right hand side as you can pop open the case and view your screen without removing it from the case—it almost acts like a little table. With a simple flick of the latch, the lid pops open and the phone lays itself out, much like a glove compartment in a car.
But therein lies one of the big problems with this case: the latch. It’s too easy to pop open and when you close it, you better make sure it is latched. If not, what happens is the case will just open up with your phone laying there in the case—one big bump and it’s on the floor. Now, in fairness I have had the case pop open on more than one occasion but I have never had the phone plop out—that is due in part to the design. So although this sounds bad and it is certainly not a great “feature”, it was not bad enough for me to stop using it as it is an infrequent occurrence. The rest of the benefits: light, low profile, hard protection, etc. were more important to me. Still, it is something to be aware of.
The Palm Hard Case offers great protection for the 700w in a light and low profile form factor. Price is a bit high but it has protected my 700wx from numerous bangs and I really like the look and feel of the case. The only issues: no hole at the bottom for headphones and the latch could be better.