BlackBerry Case Review: Speck Products TechStyle Classic w/ Holster for BlackBerry Pearl 8100

By Gary Mazo on 1 Jan 2008 10:24 pm EST
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Speck Products TechStyle Classic w/ Holster for BlackBerry 8100 Pearl 

The Ultimate in Style and Protection for your Pearl

Did you get a shiny, new BlackBerry Pearl for the Holidays? There are few feelings like holding that new BlackBerry Pearl in your hands when it first comes out of the box.  It is shiny, smooth, scratch free and truly beautiful to look at.

Unfortunately, most of us are pretty tough on our phones – especially our Blackberries.  They get so much use and so much in and out of pockets and purses and jackets that they start to scratch and look worn.

Because of this, a good, protective case is almost a must have. There are lots of options and many to choose from in the CrackBerry Store.  Today, we will take a good look at the Speck Products TechStyle Classic w/Holster Case and see if this is the one you should invest in to protect your new Pearl.

A Side view of the Speck Techstyle Classic As you can see from looking in the CrackBerry Store, cases come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and styles.  Holsters are particularly attractive to BlackBerry users because of the nature of BlackBerry devices as business devices – often on our belt.

The problem with holsters is that once you take the BlackBerry out of the holster, it is unprotected – and vulnerable if we were to drop it while using it (a fate that has happened to most of us.)

The problem with “skin” type form-fitting leather cases is that they don’t stay well on our belts.

Enter Speck Products with a unique solution that provides the style of a leather form fitting case with the protection and convenience of a holster.

The “Official” line from Speck products is the following:

“Enhance your BlackBerry Pearl with a premium, hand-crafted Classic leather case. These beautiful, textured cases are adorned with fine stitching, a removable swivel holster, and touch-thru screen protector. Offers secure protection and classic style for your BlackBerry Pearl.

  • Made from premium leather
  • Soft, plaid interior lining
  • Sewn-in screen protector
  • Removable swivel holster (belt clip)”

Design and Function:

The Speck case is really a brilliant design.  Too many leather form-fitting cases either don’t have a belt clip, or, if they do, it protrudes from the case making it uncomfortable to also use in your pocket.

The brilliantly designed Speck TechStyle for the 8100
The Stylish Speck TechStyle Classic

Speck offers the best of both worlds – a form-fitting leather case and a leather holster.  The beauty of this design is that when in the holster – you have a nice looking, safe way to transport your BlackBerry.  The holster is made of strong leather over a harder material that gives it a very secure feeling.

The holster is also “magnetized” so that the “holster” features available in your BlackBerry Profile settings can be used (like “vibrate in holster.”)

The “Skin” part of the case is also made of a nice, durable feeling leather.  Pretty much every part of the BlackBerry Pearl is protected – with openings for the convenience keys, standby button and charging port.

The “Skin” case has a snap on the back to keep the Pearl in place once it is loaded (from the top) into the case.

The “Skin” case also has a plastic screen protector in place which protects the BlackBerry screen.  Now, I am generally not a fan of plastic screen protectors for BlackBerries since none have a touch screen which gets poked on continually.  Some people like the added protection and this case certainly offers that.

Fit and Finish/Aesthetics:

My sample case came in nice, dark brown leather.  The holster had a nice plaid design on the inside which was certainly fashionable.

A Look at the Speck in the Box!
The TechStyle Classic in the Box!

The leather seems “protective” and durable. This is not soft, supple calf skin which you find on many very expensive cases – this is hard, protective leather – function over aesthetics here.
The cutouts were all fine – there was easy access to all the main buttons and keys.  Stitching was also nicely done – functional and sturdy.

Protection:

The Speck case offers good protection for the BlackBerry.  When in the holster, it was secure and tight.  I never had to worry about the BlackBerry falling out of the holster.

When out of the holster, the BlackBerry seemed pretty well protected by the leather skin and the screen protector.  The leather was hard, but pliable – which made me think it would hold up well if dropped.

Areas of Concern:

One small area of concern was that the edging was not smooth – when I put the BlackBerry into the case, I did worry that it might get scratched on the way in – or on the way out.  Since we all have to do the occasional “battery pull” every so often, this was a concern for me.

Overall Conclusions:

This is a well made and protective case.  The solution to have both a leather holster and a leather skin really does make a lot of sense.  The BlackBerry was always protected – both in and out of the holster.

Ratings Review Summary:
Speck Products TechStyle Classic w/ Holster for BlackBerry Pearl 8100
Ratings for the Speck Products TechStyle Classic w/ Holster

Pros:

  • Good protection
  • Well made
  • Inexpensive

Cons:

  • Leather feels a little “plastic”
  • Screen protector produces some glare

Buy Now:
Purchase the Speck Products TechStyle Classic w/ Holster for BlackBerry Pearl 8100

7 comments

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BlackBerry Case Review: Speck Products TechStyle Classic w/ Holster for BlackBerry Pearl 8100

7 Comments
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What we find in OEM cases are grooves that are strategically placed to align the trackball when sliding it in. This one doesn't seem to have one, or does it?

One thing I don't like about this kind of cases, just like the CaseMate, taking it out and putting it in is not as smooth and gentle as the other cases out there.

I like the color though.

This looks awful - no style at all. Why would anyone want to wrap their sleek, new Blackberry Pearl in something that looks like it´s been made from grandpa´s old slippers!

Berryman

Hmm..well now that's an opinion. I think you have no style. This is cool in that golfer/70s sort of way. This is what Andre3000 from OutKast would keep his BlackBerry in.

Grandpa's Slippers Rock!

My wife and I both have one of these cases. When I used the pocket case the Blackberry comes with, I was always concerned about the phone slipping out of my hands. This case definitely gives the phone a more solid feel in your hands, and the holster holds the phone securely. I sure wish they had a more masculine version (ie: all black), as I do get some strange looks and comments when the phone is in my hand and people see the empty holster.

When I bought this I chucked the case, just not my thing. But, I really bought it for the holster. I mounted (had a stick on clip that it holds tight to)it in a sweet spot in my F150 to the left of the driver (me:)). When I get in the truck I just pop it in and let bluetooth take over. Even when nothing is in it I always get comments on how nice the Burberry plaid looks from my passengers.