Review of Lifedge Waterproof Phone case, bike mount and float band

This is a review of the Lifedge waterproof case for the iPhone 5 and 5s. The review will also look at the float band and optional bike mount. The review also compares the Lifedge case to other popular waterproof phone cases such as the Lifeproof case.

I have owned a Lifeproof case for my iPhone 5 for over a year, but the case started to develop issues (the audio became faint). I contacted their customer services, and they did not even reply. So I decided to look for an alternative.

The Lifedge phone case for the iPhone 5 and 5s seemed to be just what I was looking for. Cheaper than the Lifeproof case, and the company is based in the UK, so at least I would have some chance of help if I experienced any issues.

The packaging certainly looked good…

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The box contained the phone case, an adaptor to allow use of earphones with the case, and instructions…

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The packaging also included the warranty card, which allows you to register the case and receive invitations to competitions and other events…

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The case itself comes in two halves, which snap together to form a waterproof seal.

The back of the case contains openings for the camera lens (all of the lenses on the Lifedge case use glass, and not plastic) and the phone flash, as well as a port for the noise cancelling feature found on the iPhone 5 (this is a nice touch, and a feature not found on the Lifeproof case)…

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The inside of the cover contains a pad and an o-ring seal…

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The front of the case contains the window for the iPhone’s touch screen…

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The buttons on the exterior of the case are tough, but easy to operate, and not fiddly. In particular, I liked the “+ Volume” button, which has been enlarged on the case, so that you can use it as the camera shutter. This is a great idea, and it works really well…

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On the bottom of the phone are audio ports, the 3.5mm earphone jack socket, and the charging port…

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The design of the charging port, allows the phone to be charged whilst in the case – this is a real plus for me. The home button (bottom middle) is also very neat, and much better than the one found on the Lifeproof case. The earphone socket has an o-ring seal, and a leash, which stops it from being lost when the headphones are being used.

On the top of the phone, there is a leashing point (more of this later),, the on/off switch, and a latch to keep the case closed…

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It is very quick and simple to add the case to an iPhone. Simply put the phone on the back side of the case, and push the two edge clasps together. Then move around the phone, compressing the seal, and finally, close the top latch and the charging door. Job done…

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I noticed that there was a small gap around the middle of the two halves of the case, which did concern me a bit to start with, but after opening the case, I realised that the seal is still intact.

The touch screen worked well, but I did find that the edges of the screen were not as sensitive as the rest of the screen. The charger, and the camera also functioned really well. The audio was surprisingly good; I made some phone calls and played some music through the speakers, and was genuinely surprised at the output. The recipient of my phone call also commented that my voice sounded clear – so things were looking good.

Next to check the supplied earphone socket by connecting the iPhone to my car stereo using the supplied adaptor…

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Everything worked well, including streaming with Bluetooth.

So the phone behaved as per the specification, but I wanted to know if the case would stand up to some abuse… I took the phone out kayak fishing on a few trips and gave it a proper dunking…. the result – its was absolutely fine (although I have to admit I was nervous dunking my shiny iPhone 5 into the saltwater !!!).

There are also some optional accessories available from Lifedge, which I will look at below…

Lifedge float

The Lifedge float, attaches to the leashing point on the Lifedge phone, and allows the phone to be used for watersports.  It is designed to support the weight of the case and iPhone when dropped in water.

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The float has a small leashing cord, which is threaded and looped through the leashing point on the top of the case…

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The floating portion is designed to be worn around your arm, and uses an adjustable buckle which can be tightened or loosened to obtain a snug fit…

DSCF2143 The float works well, and I did test it out by throwing it into the water – it did support the weight of the phone and case. I am not sure that the float would be a huge amount of help to kayak fishermen, but it may be for other watersports enthusiasts.

Lifedge Bike mount

The optional Lifedge bike mount, allows the Lifedge case to be secured to the handlebars of a bike.

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The bike mount simply clamps on to the handlebars, and then the case is held securely in place and locked with a latch. The whole thing is completely and easily adjusted.

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The bike mount is supplied with three spacers to enable it to be clamped to handlebars of different widths.

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The handlebar attachment is tightened using an allen key.

The knob on the top of the mount, allows the head to swivel, rotate, and pivot.

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Once the mount has been attached to the handlebars, the case is pushed into the bracket on the top of the mount. The Lifedge case has grooves on the side which lock into place on the mount.

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Once the phone is pushed into the mounting plate, the side latch is closed, this holds the Lifedge case in place, then a locking latch is pulled up to lock everything in place.

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Once locked in position, the Lifedge bike mount is rock solid. I went on quite a few mountain bike trails to test it out, and experienced no problems whatsoever.

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The best things about the Lifedge bike mount are the ease of adding/removing the phone, and the simple adjustment system.

Conclusions

I did not want to write a review for the Lifedge products until I had a chance to test them out properly. Saltwater kayak fishing in the UK is a tough environment for any equipment, and after using the Lifedge case with my iPhone 5 for almost a month now in these conditions, I am very happy with the results.

Lifedge Vs Lifeproof form factor comparison…

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There are always going to be comparisons with the Lifedge vs Lifeproof cases. I have been lucky enough to use both of these cases (and several others including the Griffon Survivor), and in my opinion, when looking at the the case as a whole, the Lifedge comes out on top… the Lifeproof case is more compact, but the Lifedge is tougher. The Lifedge has better buttons, the case lenses are better, and the audio ports are better. The Lifedge case is also slighly cheaper than the Lifeproof case. Given the negative experience I had with my Lifeproof case regarding customer support, the fact that Lifedge are based in the UK, also has to be a real plus. I now keep my iPhone in the Lifedge case all of the time, not just when I am on the water kayak fishing.

A link to the Lifedge website is shown below…

http://www.lifedge.co.uk/

Video showing the Lifedge case getting a dunking in the sea…