I have always liked the concept of skin cases, but for me their rubber makes it difficult to quickly slide the Treo in and out of a pocket because it grips to the inside of the pocket. Only recently have we seen a decent skin case holster, but I'm a pocket guy, so my Treo usually goes naked.
With the Smartphone Experts ClearCase, there're no rubber parts that attract lint and rub against your pocket. Could this be the perfect slim case?
When I first got the ClearCase in, I thought that I got the wrong case because there was a cardboard picture of the Treo 700w inside the case. The picture is meaningless, however, as the ClearCase works with the Treo 700w, 700p, and 650.
The ClearCase is comprised of two crystal clear plastic halves. Lay the Treo in the bottom half and then lineup the two tabs into their slots on the right hand side of the top half of the case and it solidly clicks into place. There is a removable plastic screen cover that easily flips up when you need to use the stylus and shuts with a satisfying click when closed. All of the Treo's main functions are accessible. Only the SIM slot on GSM Treos is covered, and that's not something you're going to need to get to very often anyway. I do wish the back half of the case had a hole or a cutout for the Treo's reset button for those of us that have the Seidio Battery Cover.
On the back of the case is a recessed metal piece into which you can screw the included metal belt clip-holding nub so you can wear the case on your belt. There is also a slot for a single SD card.
I was really impressed by how light and unobtrusive the ClearCase is. It is aptly named, as the plastic casing is completely clear (a smoke-colored version is also available). The plastic is very smooth; you can easily slide the ClearCase in and out of a jacket or pants pocket. Most of the cutouts, such as the stylus slot, are well done. However, the SD card holder on the back seems as if it was thrown in at the last moment and is poorly designed. You have to insert an SD card so that its metal pins face outward, increasing the chance of damage.
It is also a major pain to get a card in and out of the slot because it's way too tight a fit. I was never worried about the card falling out because I had to use both hands just to get it out of the slot. I was more concerned about bending/breaking the SD card the whole time. And if you have long fingernails, you're gonna hate how tight this card slot is. Just a millimeter wider and the slot would be perfect.
The included belt clip is translucent plastic and reminds me of a lot of other belt clips, such as the Pacific Rim Hard Case [ Review | Buy ]. The belt clip does an adequate job of securing the Treo.
I like the fact that you can remove the screen lid, as some users may find it annoying. You can easily flip the lid up by sliding your thumbnail into a little notch at its bottom. The lid means that a screen protector isn't needed and it does a great job of protecting the Treo's screen while in a pocket or facing outward on a belt. The lid is a little squeaky though.
I also like the way the two halves of the case completely separate. Otherwise the right side of the case would have needed some kind of hinge mechanism, and wouldn't have a nice clean look. When using the Treo's keyboard, I found that the cutout didn't get in the way of typing, even for the outlying keys such as Q, A, P, and Enter.
Another nice feature of the ClearCase is that it fits and docks beautifully into Seidio's wildly popular INNODock Cradle [ Review | Buy ] without having to remove the Treo from the case. As with any case, the less often you have to remove the Treo, the less likely you'll drop an unprotected Treo.
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Read Merciful by Casey Adolfsson