The staff at The iPhone Addict
have been big fans of the LifeProof
case ever since it was released for the iPhone 4/4S. The first generation LifeProof case for the iPhone 4/4S needed some improvements when it was first released. LifeProof responded quickly to the negative response and released a second generation LifeProof case and it was much improved. When the iPhone 5 was released, of course I had to get it on launch day but unfortunately the LifeProof case was still in production. After a few weeks of the iPhone 5 being out, LifeProof FINALLY released their waterproof case. Unfortunately it needed improvements as you can see in an earlier review
we did on it. LifeProof was informed about the negative reviews the case was getting, they decided to improve the case and fix the faults that users were experiencing.
LifeProof sent me an updated “Improved Version” of their case that they promised I would be totally satisfied with. I used this case for about 3 weeks before reviewing it in order to give an honest and fair review on their product. I must say, I was IMPRESSED…. this is what I was looking for the first time I purchased the LifeProof Fre case.
Everything about this new case looked and felt exactly like the first case that I reviewed. It initially appeared that nothing was done differently to this case to correct the problems I had in the past, until I put the iPhone 5 into the case and actually used it. The first thing right off the bat I noticed was an improved screen on this case. The screen sat flush with the iPhone, with no rainbow watermarking and the touch response was very good. You do lose a little touch sensitivity with this case but that is to be expected when you put a piece of plastic in between your finger the screen, but it is very minor though. The first LifeProof Fre I reviewed had a screen that was very loose and had a considerable gap in between it and the iPhone screen making it very difficult to text. With the improved LifeProof FRE I had a very good touch response and texting was smooth and tolerable. This LifeProof case also did NOT make that aggravating “ticking” sound when I typed liked the first one did, that is due to the fact that the screen has been improved.
Next I paid close attention to how the proximity sensor would be affected. I did not experience any issues with the proximity sensor with this case. When I was on a phone call, the screen would shut off when held to my ear and would immediately come on when I removed it. It was very precise.
After further review of the new and improved LifeProof Fre case for the iPhone 5, I wanted to really test the sound quality of a phone call. The first LifeProof case I reviewed had a loud screeching noise when I was on a phone call and the quality of the call was terrible. I could hardly hear the person on the other end even though the volume on the iPhone was all the way up. After using this case on a bunch of phone calls I noticed the screeching noise was totally gone and I could hear the other person loud and clear. I was concerned how my voice sounded to them since the iPhone is totally sealed while in this case, they said I sounded perfect. The poor sound quality problem of the LifeProof FRE case was obviously corrected.
The last problem I was testing to see if LifeProof had improved or not was the vibrating back of the case when the external speaker is being used. I found this issue to also be corrected with this so called “second generation” case. I used it with the speakerphone and also with music playing through the external speaker. There was a little vibration mainly with the bass notes but it did not distort the sound at all and overall the sound quality was pretty good.
One problem I did experience while using this case was a dislike for the texture of the screw-in headphone button. By this what I mean is, while I was holding the iPhone in my hand and using my thumb to type and navigate with, the rough edges of the button rubbed on my pinky finger making it very uncomfortable to hold in my hand for an extensive period of time. You can get an idea from the picture below. This would only be a potential problem for someone that types with their right hand. This issue is a minor one and is just an opinion of mine. It might not even be enough of a problem for LifeProof to even be concerned with, but my suggestion to LifeProof is to make a smooth textured headphone button with a groove in the center big enough for your fingernail or a flathead screwdriver so you can get install and remove it.
Overall the new and improved
LifeProof FRE case has met my expectations and it appears they have corrected the negative issues that the case had when it was first released. That is what makes a company good, when you listen to the problems your customers have and then improve on it.
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