Why you should use your smartphone without a case

A photo of two iPhones without cases.Apple

Common wisdom says that you should protect your precious iPhone or Android smartphone with a case. For some it’s a good idea. But there are some strong reasons why most people might not need it. We are exploring the options.

Warranties and cloud backup mean fewer worries

Some smartphones, such as the iPhone, cost quite a bit of money, which makes some people understandably concerned about accidental damage from drops or otherwise. That is probably the main reason why people use a case to protect their phone. Fortunately, some manufacturers offer extended warranties against accidental damage, making the no-case option less risky.

For example, Apple’s AppleCare+ plan covers two incidents of accidental damage every 12 months with service charges: $29 for screen/glass damage and $99 for everything else. So you don’t have to worry about a cracked screen on your $800 iPhone as much as you would without AppleCare+.

In the Android world, Google offers Preferred Care for its Pixel phones and Samsung offers Samsung Care+ for its smartphones. Both offer similar reimbursements for accidental repairs (for example, $29 for cracked screens).

And if you’re concerned about losing your data if you accidentally damage your phone, automated cloud backup options (like Apple’s iCloud+ or Google’s Google One) can put your mind at ease. If you damage or lose your phone, you can easily restore it from a cloud backup on a new or repaired device.

Obviously, these warranty and backup plans cost extra money, so they’re not for everyone, but they do serve as relatively inexpensive insurance against damage and data loss.

Free your smartphone

iPhone Live Text on iOS 15.

Now that we’ve shown you can skip the case and have peace of mind with an enhanced warranty and backup solutions, enjoy the benefits of case-free living. Here are a few:

Smaller and lighter: Without a case, your smartphone is thinner and lighter and fits more easily in a pocket or bag. That also means rubber covers won’t snag on the fabric or build up lint. Looks better: Many people buy fancy smartphones and then hide them in generic black cases. Without a case, you can show the world the color and beauty of your smartphone’s original design. No Gesture Interference: Some smartphone cases interfere with gestures, especially those that require swiping in from the edge of the screen. Without a case, those gestures become much easier to perform. Less landfill waste: Manufacturers make millions of phone cases every year. Have you been checking out your local Target’s clearance rack lately? It is usually full of unsold device cases. If you don’t buy a case, that’s a lot less waste that you have to end up in the landfill once your phone is outdated. If not enough people buy cases (and phones become easier to repair), the size of the case market will shrink and the total amount of cases will also drop. Less interference with wireless charging: Sure, there are plenty of cases that are compatible with wireless charging standards like MagSafe and Qi, but some are more expensive than the alternatives. You can charge wirelessly without a case.

RELATED: What Is MagSafe for iPhone, and What Can It Do?

Alternative cases: skins, stickers and screen protectors

Galaxy S21 skin.dbrand

Instead of packing your iPhone or Android device into a case, there are some other options that don’t add as much weight and bulk. To customize the look of a phone, you can use skins and decals that add style (from whimsical to stylish — and everything in between) and scratch protection to your phone’s body.

To protect your phone’s screen from cracks and scratches, you can install a very thin screen protector. This is a transparent piece of glass or plastic that sticks to the surface of your smartphone’s screen. Screen protectors are also usually less expensive than cases, which is another advantage.

When to use a suitcase

Let’s face it: for some people, smartphone cases still make sense. For example, if you use a smartphone for essential communications in a high-stakes job, or use one regularly in a life-and-death situation where someone could die if your smartphone breaks. You have to protect your smartphone, because in an emergency you cannot immediately repair or replace it.

In those cases, you might want to go for one of the toughest and most prized smartphone cases made, the Otterbox Defender series. They are pricey, but they will certainly protect your smartphone from harsh conditions. Please make sure to find the right model for your particular smartphone before purchasing.

Some smartphone cases also add extra battery life (so you can go longer on a single charge) or double as a basic wallet for important cards like your ID or a debit card. They offer more convenience than simple protection, so they may be worth the extra bulk.

But if you’re not using a smartphone case, you’re not alone. According to Statistia, about 20% of smartphone owners also go caseless. With extended shatter protection guarantees and stronger screen glass available, those numbers can only increase over time. Join the case-free revolution!

RELATED: The Best iPhone 13 Cases of 2022

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