Bored by the endless parade of silicone-rubber skins for your iPod nano? Speck Products wants you to have some fun with its FunSkin Grass. Intended to remind you of the green glories of your front yard on a summer day, the FunSkin Grass is covered with little green “blades” of rubber grass, providing a decidedly unique iPod experience. It’s also available in black, though I’m a little frightened by the idea of black grass.
Functionally speaking, the FunSkin Grass is a pretty standard case. It provides openings for screen and Click Wheel, as well as a small hole on top for accessing your nano’s hold switch and an open bottom for getting to the dock connector and headphone jack. Speck also includes a hard, clear acrylic screen protector and a removable belt clip.
The grassy texture of the case actually reminded me of a toy called Bristle Blocks that I had with a kid. Like the blocks, the FunSkin is surprisingly functional: the grass “blades” on the case not only make the case easier to grip, but they stick out far enough that they provide an extra level of protection to the iPod itself, should you chance to drop it flat on its face. The hard screen protector is also a welcome addition, since it provides more protection than your average thin, adhesive film. The detachable belt clip is easy to take on and off and the iPod can swivel freely when attached to the clip, though it won’t stay in the position you swivel it to.
The FunSkin Grass lacks solid Click Wheel protection, which is unfortunate since it provides such good screen protection, and the grass texture does make the svelte nano somewhat bulkier. Still, if you’re looking for a case that stand out while remaining functional, the FunSkin Grass accomplishes both goals. –Dan Moren