One of my favorite cases for the BlackBerry Z10 was the Transform Shell Case. It was minimal and while it didn't offer much in protection, I liked the fact that it could double as a stand. I tend to gravitate towards these types of cases. When I got hold of a BlackBerry Z30 and saw that there would be a Transform Shell Case for it too, I had to get one to try out. We actually did a first look at the BlackBerry Z30 Transform Case back in September 2013 but at the time device was not available yet. With more and more people getting their hands on the BlackBerry Z30, there is no better time than to put the Transform Shell Case through its paces and see how it fairs as a case and stand.
The first thing you notice, compared to the BlackBerry Z10 version, is that when using it as a stand you don't have to take off the case from the device in order to prop it up. BlackBerry designed this one so as you just lift a flap on the back that will act as a stand. The Z30 version also has a more plastic finish on it than the Z10 one. It is still a minimal case that covers the back and four corners of the device.
On the back of the case you have your embossed BlackBerry logo and name. The back also has two textures to it. The outer part of the case is a smooth plastic finish whereas the centre part which includes the flap-stand is a bit more rough feeling to add grip to the case, otherwise it would be too slippery in the hand. There is a cut out for the camera on the back too. Since it really just covers the back and four corners of the device, there's easy access to ports, volume keys and power button, as well as the speakers on the top and bottom. And because the sides of the device aren't covered it doesn't feel bulky in the hand. As you know the Z30 is a big device, even putting on a silicone type case makes it bulky for my small hands but with the Transform Shell it isn't so bad in the hand.
With the look an feel out of the way, let's move on to the case transforming into a stand. As I mentioned earlier, the Z30 Transform Shell now has a flap that will act as a stand. With the Z10 version, you had to slip off the case from the device in order to make it stand. In theory the Z30 Transform Shell is better as the device is still covered up while in stand mode, however, it's not always easy getting it to prop up.
It has been designed so that you can stand the phone in either portrait or landscape mode. I'm not sure when you would want to prop it up in portrait mode but you have the option nonetheless. When standing it up in landscape mode, the flap occasionally wants to slip back depending on the surface you're on but for the most part it sits there just fine even if you accidentally nudge the table a little. In portrait mode however, since you're working with a narrower area, a little nudge and it falls. Again, the rougher the surface the better it stands but getting it to sit nicely in portrait mode can be a nightmare sometimes. Like I said though, I can't think of too many times you'll be propping it up in portrait mode anyway.
A nice little touch on the case are the tiny stud-like bits on the bottom and the side of the case. They're on the sides of the case that you would sit it on when in stand mode. This helps to keep it in place when propped up. They're not too big that they are unsightly but it's a nice design touch that didn't go unnoticed on my part.
- Doesn't add bulk
- Lightweight case
- Doubles as a stand
- Doesn't stand well on slippery surfaces, especially in portrait mode
- Minimal protection
If you're looking for a minimal case for your BlackBerry Z30 you may want to give the Transform Shell case a try. If anything, I use it for its ability to double up as a stand. Great for when I want to watch a video or two when around the house. Since it doesn't add bulk that's another win for me and my small hands. I can keep the back protected from scratches too. Obviously, being minimal and only really covering the corners it's not going to be a case for those who want that extra protection. You're going to want to look elsewhere. The Transform Shell case is more for those quick runs where you just want to cover it up a little.
The Transform Shell case for the Z30 comes in three colors - black, white and blue/black. You can get it from Shop CrackBerry today.