No. 4: LifeProof Fre
| November 25, 2013 |
The pioneers of the waterproof case, no ranking of the toughest smartphone cases available would be complete without mentioning LifeProof. The LifeProof cases protect your phone from drops, spills and being completely submerged in water—and all in an impressively slim package. The LifeProof Fre has been updated to work with the iPhone 5S’ Touch ID fingerprint scanner, but the squishiness of the screen protector prevents this phone from rising any higher in our ranking. Plus, a problem that we’ve seen since the first versions of the case are issues with the person you’re talking to on the other end sometimes not being able to hear you very well. It’s unclear why this happens, but we’ve noticed opening up the case’s charging port latch alleviates it a bit. Despite those reservations, the case does what it says: it keeps water out. $80
LifeProof also makes a version of the Fre for the Samsung Galaxy S4. $80.