The iPhone X, the most expensive smartphone Apple has ever made, is undeniably an aesthetic marvel, from the chrome-colored rounded corners and the reflective glass rear cover to the elliptical vertical camera module. Regardless of your thoughts on the pesky notch, the phone itself also feels fantastic to hold in your hand.
For all those reasons, it feels like a crime to put a case on the device. And yet I’ve done just that for the past six months. I’ve owned the iPhone X since October, when it first shipped. I promptly put an Apple-made brown leather case on it, which has gracefully aged from a pristine caramel color to a kind of oil paint blend of browns and blacks. By all means, it is a nice looking case and a fitting cover for the phone.
Still, there is an argument to be made that these devices, particular Apple-made smartphones, are best experienced in their out-of-the-box form.
we use our phones all day every day, for hours and hours and in a varsity of precarious activities and environments, from bike rides to dance floors to subway tracks. So it’s become easy to think of these devices as simultaneously delicate and disposable, an object we feel we should have the liberty to be careless about and yet one we remain terrified of disabling in any way whatsoever.
So starting this week, I’ve taken the Apple leather case off my iPhone X. I still carry it with me, and leave it on my desk or in my bag, as a safety measure against my fears of a cracked screen or scratched mic grille. I’ll see if it ultimately proves to be as dumb a decision as it can feel like to walk case-less over asphalt and risk fumbling its hard-to-grip glass back. But at the very least, I’ll put the case back on when I ride my bike — I’m not that stupid.