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E&B Slipper Case

Thu Mar 2, 2006 - 3:14 PM EST - By Jay Gross


As manufacturers have warmed to the task, each attempting to outdo the others, today’s Treo cases do everything but cook breakfast. However, the most important thing they do is to keep scratches and dings off the Treo, especially its screen. There are many approaches - squishy plastic, cooooold metal, and hides of domesticated animals. This E&B Cases "slipper" entry takes the languorous Napa leather approach, with great results.

With turned, neatly stitched edges, the Slipper’s clever design obviates extra padding to protect the Treo's screen. For one thing, it’s covered up, and there's no scratchable plastic window.

Closed, the case’s top doesn't touch the screen. Even if it did it’s as smooth as a sheep, padded and reinforced. You’d have to do some determined squeezing to deflect this case’s top, and you’d really have to sit on it to mash (technical term) any buttons.

The case’s top, double-thickness leather, has padding on the outside where it doesn’t need any, except to feel nice. It feels great. Inside, a very tight pocket holds an SD memory card and a business card. Good luck getting more than one of each in there, but of course the fit has to be tight so the items won’t go sailing when you open the case.

Perfectly sized for an SD memory card, the pocket-in-a-pocket could instead accommodate a spare SIM chip if you're roaming around an Alp and need to swap in a European provider's identity. The tweezers in your Swiss Army Knife might come in handy to retrieve it.


The Slipper case “slips” on with ease, and comes back off with no hammer required. Not too loose, not too snug. Name the cozy fit “convenient,” because that’s what it is.

Treo's bottom ports peek out through a cutout in the Slipper, so it’s available to charge or HotSync without shucking the leather. The earphone jack stays accessible, too. Un-snap the bottom flap from the Velcro and the ports gleam at you. When the case is fully open, all of Treo's slots and buttons invite your attention, including the SIM card slot and the camera lens, plus the full keyboard.

With leather so light, you might guess the Treo would fit a cradle without shucking it from the case. It sort-a-does, but doesn't really. Even the ingeniously designed Seidio Innodock Cradle, which goes an extra nine miles to make case-bound docking possible, doesn't quite accommodate - a reinforced lip at the back of the Slipper leaves your treasured Treo at an unnerving forward angle, like it’s about to topple over.


Slipper appears well made. The package doesn't state where - but their main factory's in Mexico - of quality materials. Crafted in fine Napa leather [Napa is sheepskin, not cowhide. The company admits it's using the term "Napa" loosely. The product is cowhide, but they call it "Napa" to indicate its designer-desirable qualities. Does it matter if it could once moo or baa? It's nice, either way.] However, placement of some of the cutouts could be better. In addition, the thin strap crosses the Treo too close to the "Home" and "Menu" buttons. That strap couldn't get much narrower, but it could move up a few important millimeters to make room for big ol' fingers. Other openings could use some refining, too. They don't quite align.

ADDENDA (June 23, 2006)

The case fits the new Treo 700P better than the 650. The crossover strap isn't nearly as intrusive, and doesn't interfere nearly as much with the top two buttons, which on the 700P are differently shaped and have different functions. Otherwise, the fit and function are the same as for the 650.

Slipper comes plain (reviewed here), or with belt clip. The sales materials claim the top flap will Velcro in reverse to make a hand strap. True that, if you have hands the size of omelette pans. The Velcro can’t hold secure enough to make a trustworthy strap. It does, however, keep the cover from flapping around annoyingly during phone calls.


Forget dunking your Treo, anyway, and the Slipper doesn’t add any protection against water. Throw it, drop it, drive over it at your own peril, but for reasonably normal - or not - use, the case promises to protect the Treo excellently, with style.

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