Apple Bumper plus Gelaskin on iPhone 4

For the past week I’ve been using both a Gelaskin and an Apple Bumper case on my iPhone 4. I’m very happy with the result, as the phone looks great, is well protected and functions just as I’d like, with a couple of caveats. Here’s why I’m so pleased with this combination.

The Gelaskin

The durable Gelaskin was easier to apply than I imagined. With some patience you can line it up perfectly, though if you don’t, it’s simple to try again. I went with a simple white with a classic rainbow Apple logo. It looks good, has sealed the crack and already absorbed some abuse that would have been transmitted to the iPhone itself.

The Bumper

Honestly, I was worried about the Bumper’s quality before it arrived. When I read that people were using Live Strong bracelets in place of Apple’s case, I lowered my hopes. Surely it’s more than a piece of rubber.

I can report that it is. It’s a sturdy rectangle of rubber with a thin layer of plastic on the exterior. Holes for all of the major access points, like headphone jack, dock connector and silence button keep them accessible. Additionally, mini volume and on/off buttons sit just on top of their counterparts. Adjusting the volume and switching the phone on and off with the Bumper on is just as effective as with it off. There’s no need to press harder, etc.

It fits snugly and gives you the feeling that it’s “on there.”

A great combination

Here’s why I like the two together. Before the Bumper arrived, the piece of Gelaskin that goes over the home button was just starting to peel up in one corner. It’s my own fault; I caught it on a fingernail and bent it. However, the lip of the Bumper perfectly comes over the edges of the Gelaskin, keeping it firmly in place. Plus, the Bumper keeps the Gelaskin itself from touching most flat surfaces, preventing scratching.

Caveats

There are a couple of things to be aware of. First, the original dock connector-to-USB cable doesn’t fit properly with the Bumper in place. I’ve really got to jam it in there. The cable that ships with the iPhone 4 works perfectly, however, so I typically use that.

Also, the audio cable I’ve been using with my car stereo doesn’t sit all the way in the headphone jack with the Bumper in place. Again, I’ve got to push hard to get a connection. Here, the solution is simple: Just buy another cheap cable from Radio Shack.

All in all, I’m happy with the Gelaskin and Bumper, and I’m glad that the Bumper itself is more substantial than I initially thought it would be.

Of course, I did mooch the thing from Apple for free, so that could be the guilt talking.