Print Edition: April 9, 2014
I’ve been noticing more and more elaborate and creative phone cases and sleeves every day, even to the point where it’s counter-intuitive. You know what I’m talking about: those giant plastic covers that attempt to convince passers-by that your phone is a cat, or a bunny, or anything else that has generic triangular ears. If you’re thinking of buying one of these rubber animal cases, don’t. They look childish, and worst of all, you’ll look childish. Phones are getting bigger, and pockets are getting smaller, even to the point where some women’s pants don’t have pockets, just the illusion of pockets. Do yourself a favour and don’t multiply the size of your phone by three simply to add ears to it. It’s a phone, not a pet.
On the flipside, however, there are cases which look great: minimalist and colourful. I can see the appeal. Sometime in the past month I noticed that an acquaintance had, apparently unwittingly, matched the colour scheme of her outfit with that of her phone case. Her phone looked more like an accessory than a tool. I thought: well, when was the last time a phone didn’t look like an extension of an outfit?
Now let’s go forward in time, perhaps 15 years. What if phones have become such a crucial part of our existence that they not only need to keep up with technology and function properly, but they need to keep up with our wardrobe, as well? Am I wearing a lot of blue today? Well, out comes the blue phone case. Do I have a leather jacket on? Well, so does my phone. When did the phone stop being a tool and start being a fashion statement? Why do you need the latest iPhone when the previous version works just as well, and is only a year old? I’ll tell you why: It’s because you’re not buying a phone. You’re buying a pair of shoes, a scarf, an accessory. You’re buying the Ray-Ban Wayfarer of phones. Sure, there are others that are cheap and get the job done, but this, this has style. This phone screams out to the world, it says: I look good, I dress well, and my phone? My phone matches me.
So the next time you’re buying a phone, ask yourself: what are you really buying? A phone, or the equivalent of a $500 bracelet that, by the way, can call and text and surf the web?