Contest details at the end of this article.... keep reading, and good luck!
Your beautiful BlackBerry; is there a sexier smartphone out there? I think not, nor would my eyes ever dare to wander. Okay, so my BlackBerry addiction isn't that bad, or else I'd have a whole new set of issues to deal with. You do have to admit that RIM's line up (past, current and future) is quite stunning. Over time and through wear and tear, your device goes from functional and fabulous to functional and frumpy. The trick to slow the aging process? Handle with care and keep it covered. There may be a problem with this. Do you want to sacrifice sexy style for security? Some skins offer great protection, but are damn ugly. Not only that, but you may experience interference when using the keypad or touch screen. The iSkin may offer the best of both worlds.
There’s been quite some buzz lately online about the iSkin. I’ve been lucky enough to try them out for a while now; about a month or so before they hit the CrackBerry store. Their lineup is colorful, and very eye catching. There’s only a handful of BlackBerrys in my office, but mine still stands out with the iSkin. Want to know how well they work after a few months? Read on fashion lover! Warning- there may be a giveaway involved!!
Okay, so maybe that was a little creepy to say. Let’s forget it and move on. The iSkins are available for a wide variety of products; from BlackBerrys, iPods and iPhones to MacBook Pro/Air, keyboards and mice (or is it meese?). For the BlackBerry smartphone, here’s what iSkin carrys; Vibes and Vibes FX. Both are promising to bring sizzle and style to your world. The Vibes are available for the Curve 8900, Storm and Bold 9000, while the Vibes FX version is only available for the Curve 8900. Each version captures the essence of each BlackBerry model perfectly. The Bold 9000’s sports the beautiful, luxurious leather pattern we know and love. The Vibes for the Curve 8900 and Storm are smooth as silk, yet offering an edgy style. The Vibes FX are my style, not only do they come in my favourite colours (Green and Orange), but they have an argyle design on the back. Oh how I wish they made those for my Bold…maybe if I ask nicely. All colours can be seen here.
Now, besides keeping your BlackBerry’s bum ding-free, each iSkin comes with an easy to apply screen protector. The Vibes come with clear protectors, while the Vibes FX iSkins come with mirrored ones. Your BlackBerry will look good coming and going, while being guarded from drops, scuffs and scratches. Oh, I almost forgot, for added fun, iSkin also offers stickers you can use to show off your style while, providing free marketing for them!
Unlike some skins, the iSkin fits snug and securely, without being difficult to put on (yes on the BlackBerry, not me silly). This fit ensures that the Bold’s bezel is truly protected, without interfering with the keypad at all. We all know how easily the bezel can be damaged. The coverage of the iSkin is amazing! The metal surrounding the camera is covered in a clear, thick plastic, leaving a cut out for the camera lens. The mute/standby key, volume control and convenience keys are completely covered. While the iSkin is supposed to allow for functionality, I found the mute, volume and right convenience key difficult to press, while the left convenience key was very easy to accidentally press. Cut outs are left open for the mic, and a lanyard, while the Bold’s speakers are completely covered. I didn’t mind this, as calls on speakerphone, alerts and other audio can still be clearly heard.
What I was really impressed with was the iSkin solution for the USB and headphone ports. Instead of leaving them completely open, iSkin sports two doors designed to keep dust, dirt and debris out. I did find at times that the USB door didn’t always stay completely closed. I was hoping to have a door for the micro SD card slot, but alas, no such luck.
I also gave a nod of approval when I learned that iSkins Microban® antimicrobial protection was built in for increased protection against microbes. That means style without staining, and looking funky without smelling funky. The durability of these iSkins is simply sensational. I regularly used two of the iSkins, occasionally used one, and left one untouched. I wanted to see what would happen with wear and tear. In fact there was none to be seen - each iSkin felt as new as the untouched one. I’m one to also keep my BlackBerry in a case. I did try to use my BlackBerry Koskin Holster, but I ended up splitting the leather in a few places. Now I have to find another solution; does anyone have any ideas?
Despite some design issues, I’m still dressing my BlackBerry Bold in iSkin style. I love the attention grabbing colours (still wish I had an orange or green one) and protection. If you’re looking to add snazzy security to your smartphone, the iSkin is for you. You can pick up the iSkin Vibes and Vibes FX for $29.95 and $32.95 (respectively) at ShopCrackBerry.com. And now for the exciting part; Freebies!!!
There are 10 iSkins up for grabs folks, the winners can choose which of the available colors and models they want. Keep in mind that the iSkins fit the Curve 8900, Storm and Bold only. All you have to do is leave a comment on this post and you are entered. Contest ends Sunday at midnight.
Design and Function: 4/5
Fit and Finish: 5/5
Ease of Use: 4/5