capsule review

iLuv Glow-in-the-Dark Case for iPhone 4

At a Glance
  • iLuv Glow-in-the-Dark Case for iPhone 4 (CDMA)

    Macworld Rating

    This case designed specifically for the Verizon iPhone 4 is highlighted by a design that provides (a little) illumination in a darkened room.

iLuv’s Glow-in-the-Dark Case for the iPhone 4 is a novelty iPhone accessory that’s not terribly novel.

The silicon case fits over your CDMA-based iPhone 4, protecting the glass back from any unwanted scratches. There’s an opening on the back of the case for the phone’s rear-facing camera, as well openings on the top and side for the headphone jack and ring/silent switch, respectively. (There’s plenty of room for Apple’s headphone plug, so most third-party headphones and earbuds should fit the case’s opening as well.) The dock-connector port and two speakers on the phone’s bottom get their own individual openings as well, and there’s an opening on the back for the rear-facing camera. The two volume controls and the the sleep/wake button are covered, but with raised coverings that make them easy to operate.

The front of your iPhone remains uncovered by the Glow-in-the-Dark Case, but iLuv includes a protective film you can apply to the phone’s screen. Since the Glow-in-the-Dark Case wraps around the edge of the phone’s front, you can set your iPhone face-down without the screen coming into contact with your desk. However, that side-wrapping can peel back rather easily if you grab awkwardly for your phone—other cases I’ve looked at keep a tighter grip on the iPhone 4.

But the Glow-in-the-Dark Case’s marquee feature appears on its back. There, iLuv has placed a series of green crosses that, in theory, provide an unearthly glow that helps you spot your iPhone in a darkened room. In practice, though, the effect doesn’t really impress. Leaving your iPhone laying around in a lit room doesn’t allow the case to absorb enough light to provide any sort of glow when the lights go out. I was only able to make the case glow after holding it up directly under a light; even then, the Glow-in-the-Dark Case is only visible when you’re right on top of the case.

While listed as a case for the iPhone 4 that works on Verizon’s CDMA-based network, the Glow-in-the-Dark Case is also included among iLuv’s offerings for AT&T iPhone 4 models. The case will certainly fit those GSM-based iPhones, though the material will partially cover the ring/silent switch. (I could still operate the switch, however, even if it was a snug fit.)

Available in black or white, the Glow-in-the-Dark Case costs $20. As inexpensive as that price tag may be, there are better options out there for iPhone 4 users looking for a protective case.

[Philip Michaels is executive editor of Macworld.com.]

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At a Glance
  • Macworld Rating

    This case designed specifically for the Verizon iPhone 4 is highlighted by a design that provides (a little) illumination in a darkened room.

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