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CellKeeper Original

Thu Feb 28, 2008 - 9:31 AM EST - By Jay Gross

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Product Info


CellKeeper lets you keep your Treo, any model, or your Centro well protected, along with your other important possessions: money and credit cards, for example. The case is really more of a wallet (or purse, if you prefer) with a cell phone pocket than a cell phone case with an attached wallet. Great idea!

You�re getting ready to sally forth into the world and what do you round up to take along? Your phone, of course. Your driver�s license might also come in handy, in case anyone carrying a traffic ticket book should ask, plus the requisite documentation for your car. Another nice thing to have with you would be money, the more the merrier. Plastic will do. Mine yelps in pain if I even think about using it.

CellKeeper kindly provides compartments to store all of this, including an impressive collection of charge cards. The case has three slots for cards, plus slide-in pockets for driver�s license and whatever else. If you�re credit card heavy, you could also stash a couple of the critters in the other pockets. The CellKeeper provides a zippered pocket, too. Stash money there, or photos of your favorite garage band., membership card for that secret society that meets only on February 30th. Whatever. In my wallet, I like to �hide� some extra folding money from myself, a few Hamiltons out of plain sight in case disaster strikes, A zippered pocket is just enough of a reminder not to spend-spend-spend, so it�s a welcome sight for me on the wallet side of the Cell Keeper.

Paper money has to bunch up to fit into any of the pockets, but that�s okay by me. It always looks like more when it�s folded, anyway. Well, I can dream.

Besides the wallet, the CellKeeper piggybacks a compartment for your favorite smartphone. This �device� pocket � that�s what the company calls it � accommodates any of my Treos or my Centro, but I find it most comfy with my Treo 680, and especially my Centro � the smaller Palm smartphones. The larger Treos fit the pocket, but they stick out a good ways, and although the elastic-laden snap flap secures them just fine, they peek out above the edge too much for my comfort. The Centro nestles into the pocket best, and the 680�s form factor � better known as �shape� � works quite well. I documented those two with the accompanying pictures. Being red (well, crimson, in the case of my 680), they look just great in the sandy �camel� colored, brown-trimmed pocket.

Materials and construction

The CellKeeper is made of herringbone cotton and vinyl. It�s all neatly contrast-stitched together and has narrow flaps with real snaps, not magnetic or Velcro closures, to hold the phone in its pocket and to hold the �wallet� section shut. Overall the fit, finish, and quality of construction are great. The faux leather is almost like the real thing, and no cows are even annoyed by its use.

There�s also a key hook anchored to the inside, and the company�s website says that�s silver plated. Doesn�t look silver plated to me, and I wouldn�t want to have to polish it, so I�m glad if it isn�t. Indeed, with two months or more exposure to the polluted air in this downtown area, it�s still bright as new. The spring loaded key hook isn�t removable, that I can tell, though it probably ought to be. It�s not big enough to serve as a belt hook, though it might do if you had a spare belt loop to devote to the task.

The case comes with a shoulder strap, something I�m glad to see, as I�m low on pockets. I keep a pocketable digital camera with me so prize winning snapshots won�t happen while I don�t have a camera with me. To read things, I carry reading glasses � I can�t face bifocals. My pants pockets are occupied with parking meter change, a vial of headache pills, and other necessities that I won�t bore you with. So, it seems like a great idea to sling a strap over my shoulder and tote this handy little cell phone case like a purse. And get away with it.

The included strap slips through the wallet and hangs on your shoulder or across your torso. Neat. I could wish for a better way to attach the strap to the case, however � maybe two, perhaps, like the one that attaches the key loop. I tried using the shoulder strap as a neck lanyard, but found it too bulky. Feel free to disagree.


Besides looking good, cases have to protect their charges from harm, and the CellKeeper does a good job of that, especially with the Treo 680 and Palm Centro. They don�t protrude from the device pocket as much as the larger Treos, like the 650, 700w, and 700p.

The top of the phone pocket remains open, except for a narrow snap closure, so it�s possible, I suppose, for some harm to come to your Treo or Centro on its end. As for a drop, no way I�m going to test this, but I predict it�d be a no-problem scenario, especially from waist height or less. Moisture would be a problem, no matter what. While in the case, a small head-on splash might not be too bad, but water or rain getting into the Treo or Centro through the top of the device pocket would definitely be a problem. Buy an umbrella. Buy two. They�re way easy to lose (experience talking).


CellKeeper keeps your phone reasonably protected, while offering handy wallet style storage for other stuff you might need. The case and its contents totes in a pocket or purse or swings from a shoulder and adorns your person. It�s a well designed, well made, good looking case of herringbone cotton and manmade materials. It fits all of the Palm models, but works best for the smaller devices, like my crimson Treo 680 and my (red!) Centro.



Design 5
Usability 4
Protection 4
Cost/Benefit 4
(not an average)
  • Thoughtful pockets for cash, plastic, and paraphernalia
  • Zippered pocket
  • Good feel and a nice look
  • Stretchy closures accommodate a variety of phone models or other devices
  • Cons
  • Over-shoulder strap needs a better way to attach
  • Key holder is not removable
  • Loss would be even worse with everything in one place
  • Larger Treos protrude from the pocket more, and are not as well protected as the smaller models
  • Inside of phone pocket could be softer

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