Review: EXOvault 10 iPhone 4 Case.

  • June 30, 2011 1:37 pm

The iPhone 4′s styling oozes simplicity, sophistication and sleek, industrial design. Most cases cover all of that up in the name of protection. Though considering the iPhone 4 is covered by glass on it’s two larges sides, we can certainly understand wanting to cover it up. But there are a few case manufacturers out there producing high-end, fashion-forward cases.

One such manufacturer, EXOvault, was kind enough to send us a sample of their latest EXO 10 case. How does it fair? GS investigates. Hop inside for the review…

Design, Construction & Protection

Some cases feature a body-hugging silicon sleeve. Others use squishy and protruding rubber. The EXOvault instead uses various metals. While it doesn’t offer much in the way of shock protection, it definitely ads to the style factor x10.

At $150 the EXO 10 is not an impulse buy and because of the aforementioned issue with bare metal wrapped your phone, not for users paranoid about drops. On that same note, the hard body of the Exo cases offer extremely good protection against scratches and other sharp objects.

The feel of the case is boxy. To some, the lack of any hand friendly contour may be a turn off. We’ll admit that we aren’t too fond of such boxy cases either. But comfort and ultimate protection aren’t really the Exo 10′s main focus — blinding beauty is. To that degree, the Exo 10 excels handily.

One big area where the EXO 10 differs from competing cases is how you install it. Instead of a simple slide-on or snapping design, the EXO 10 uses four screws (one at each corner) to securely fasten everything in place. Rest assured, when you drop your iPhone in this case, it won’t be popping out. Fractured glass, however, is another story.

Headphone and dock usage is unlikely to be hindered thanks to the extremely large cutouts. In fact, we’d say this case is more of a skeleton than a case, though the full-cover back says otherwise.


At $150 we can’t necessarily recommend the EXO 10 as “must have”. Hell, the case costs 50% of most smartphones. Clearly in terms of financial prowess, it’s not the smartest buy.

And yet we’re intrigued. EXOvault offers custom insert options as well as insert engraving (for an added fee) that add to the overall personal feel of their cases, and to some, value.

In the end, if you have $150 burning a hole in your pocket by all means stop on by the EXOvault store and have a look around. But if you’re struggling to meet your monthly bills as is, or are plagued with a case of butterfingers, we’d suggest something a bit more affordable (and protective).

A big thank you to EXOvault for the EXO 10 sample.



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Gadget lover, smartphone collector, and beer connoisseur. I've been writing about gadgets for three years now and loving every minute of it. Outside of the digital landscape, I enjoy being active outdoors. I'm always up for a good conversation, so feel free to drop me a line!