As the number of products available for the iPhone 4 increases, more and more unique products seem to be rising to the surface. Each of these products appeal to different aspects of the consumer. For instance, some cases appeal to a sense of style, a sense of utility, or a sense of unparalleled protection. Some products even attempt to be the jack of all trades and offer something that they think will appeal to all of our sensibilities. Fairly few accessories, however, appeal to one’s environmental ethos, or one’s tendency to cling to nature. One such product is the Grove Bamboo iPhone 4 Case.
The case is molded from a single piece of bamboo that is roughly machined, before being manually shaped to create the desired form. The case is then applied with four layers of natural oils and waxes to give it a protective coating. You can read a full breakdown of the process on Grove’s website, but suffice to say, this case is created by artisans rather than factory workers or machines.
Grove offer a choice of either plain bamboo or specially designed patterns, created by talented illustrators from across the globe. The designs are then laser-etched onto the bamboo using some of the latest technologies. The finish is beautiful; the tiniest detail is viewable, and on the review case there were no visible errors. It is also lined with a felt-like fabric to minimize scratches.
bamboo is finished with a metal bezel, available in either silver or black. Like everything on this case it is well-made and hugs the phone comfortably and securely.
The product comes in a simple but stylish bamboo box, clearly created from the left-over bamboo the case came from. The outer shipping case was also filled with bamboo chippings for protection, which was a nice touch.
With so many positives there must come a few negatives, but these are more to do with iPhone cases in general rather than specific faults with Grove’s case.
The iPhone 4 is a beautifully designed device and the bamboo does add a fair bulk. One of the reasons I have avoided cases in the past is due to this fact but Grove’s case offers a distinctive look and feel to the iPhone in a way I have never experienced in a case before. Whether this bulk is enough to put you off is a personal opinion. My sizeable hands cope fine but my wife has voiced concern for those daintier among us!
The font bezel acts as a brilliant dust and lint collector too, but as previously stated this is a flaw with every case released to date.
As you can probably guess from my review, I am in love with this product. It is a thing of beauty that enhances the iPhone’s already arresting style. At $89 dollars it is not a cheap case, but in my opinion it is a worthwhile investment and will not only protect you precious iPhone, but will add character and personality to it in a way no other case can.