Review: Palm Leather Side Case for the AT&T Fuze

In the never-ending search for the "perfect" case (or close to perfect), the Palm Leather Side Case has surfaced on the radar. Along with making nice Windows Mobile phones, Palm has produced some decent accessories. While the Side Case wasn't designed for the AT&T Fuze/HTC Touch Pro, the case's dimensions make it semi-compatible with these phones. Palm's reputation rests more with its handsets and I was interested to see how they measured up in with their cases. To see how the Palm Leather Side Case measured up with the Fuze, read on after the break.

Well-constructed, but ...

I was really impressed with the construction of the Palm Leather Side Case ($24.95). The leather lining and outer shell was soft to the touch with just enough padding to add protection to the case, but not bulk. I'm not a fan of the white stitching on black leather, but the stitching was tight, with no loose seams noticeable. If we were to judge the case by construction alone, it would get five stars easily.

But alas, fit and carry are also factored into the equation. With regards to how the case carries, the Palm Side Case is fitted with a sturdy belt clip that is wrapped in soft leather. The clip is a touch on the wide side, compared to other cases, and held snugly to my belt. There was very little wiggle in how the case rode. All in all, the carry of the case was very comfortable and, along with the construction, would also receive high marks.

So we are left with the case's fit, and this is where we discover the weakest point with the Palm Leather Side Case. Understanding that the case is not custom fit for the AT&T Fuze, it is simply too large for the phone. The leather flap of the case has a magnetic closure, which is solid – and it has to be. The Fuze rattles around in the case like a guitar pick does when it falls inside the guitar. If the flap didn't secure as well as it does, I'd be afraid the Fuze would bounce out of the case.

There is a good three-quarters to 1-inch gap between the side of the phone and case flap and about a quarter of an inch gap at each side of the case. There's simply too much wiggle room with this cases fit to leave me feeling secure about how the Fuze rests inside it.

On the plus side, the case is fitted with an internal pocket that is probably intended for spare memory cards. It may be a minor detail, but it would be nice if other cases had a similar feature. However, with the larger capacity storage cards, the need to carry spares has diminished and these pockets have gone the way of the buffalo. But the pocket is large enough to hold extra cash, a house key, a "if found return to ..." note and possibly a credit card/I.D. Card.

Overall impression

When I first opened the Palm Leather Side Case ($24.95) I was really hoping it would have fit the Fuze like a glove. It's a well-built case and even though I'd rather see darker stitching, it's a good looking case. However, it was very evident when I first dropped the Fuze into the case that it wasn't going to work out. Again, understanding that this isn't a custom fit case, if Palm could tighten up the fit it would be an outstanding case for the AT&T Fuze. If a loose fit is to your liking the Palm Side Case might meet your needs but personally, I like a little more snug fit. As an alternative, look at Smartphones P7 or the Body Glove.

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Ratings (out of 5)Fit: 2/5Build: 5/5Comfort: 4/5Overall:2.5/5 ProsLeather ConstructionSolid StitchingInterior PocketConsSignificantly loose fit with regards to the phone
Phil Nickinson

Phil is the father of two beautiful girls and is the Dad behind Modern Dad. Before that he spent seven years at the helm of Android Central. Before that he spent a decade in a newsroom of a two-time Pulitzer Prize-finalist newspaper. Before that — well, we don't talk much about those days. Subscribe to the Modern Dad newsletter!