The playfully branded Gripzilla and Kung Fu Grip cases from Smartish are a couple of affordably priced and simple cases for adding some extra protection and grip to your smartphone to keep it protected.
At the time of this review, these cases are only available for the iPhone – but Smartish does have some other cases available for Galaxy S devices.
Starting off with the Gripzilla case, the case is a rugged feeling case with a decent thickness to offer good protection. Despite the rugged feeling the case doesn’t feel overly chunky, which is a good thing, as rugged-focused cases can sometimes be too thick to comfortably hold.
The Gripzilla is available in a few different colours, of flavours as Smartish calls them, I’ve been trying out the “Flavor of the Month” for this review, which is grey with a rustic leafy print on the back of the case. You can also personalise the case design if you’d like to on Smartish’s website, although this will bump up the price.
When using the case, it is incredibly comfortable to hold in the hand. This is thanks to the grooved sides of the case, which feature three grooves on each side of the case for your fingers to rest in. However, this not only makes it more comfortable, but it also allows me to get a more secure grip on my device – as the product name hints to.
This case is all about grip. The sides of the case also have a textured finish which, yet again, makes it easier to get a secure hold of your device. I do like this as it means that the case still has a grippy feel, without it needing to be rubberised. This makes the case easy to clean and easy to take in and out of my pockets without getting loose fabric fibres coating the case.
There are embossed buttons for the volume rockers and sleep/wake button, these buttons have a flat finish, so it’s easy to differentiate them from the rest of the case. The cut-outs for the microphone, speaker and ports on the bottom is also generous, making it easy to use third party cables with the case as well as a DJI drone controller, for example.
As far as protection goes, the case looks to offer a good degree of it with a thick backing to the case to protect the rear of your device, which is important as all these new iPhones not only have glass on the front but also on the back and can result in a costly repair if damaged. It’s also worth pointing out that the inside of the case has a rubber section which gives something soft for your device to sit against, I also imagine it could dissipate a bit of force from an impact if dropped.
Unlike other cases, which may sit a bit above the glass, the Gripzilla wraps around the front, slightly overlapping the sides, this gives added protection to the front but also ensures that the phone is also securely in the case and only comes out when you want it to.
The Smartish Gripzilla is a case that offers some rugged protection and a grippy and ergonomic feel all tied together in a design that is quite stylish. I would like to see some more vibrant colour options in the future, but if you need a case that feels strong and sturdy – the Gripzilla is a great option.
Kung Fu Grip
If you’re looking for something a little more streamlined, the Kung Fu Grip takes the best features from Gripzilla into a more sleek and slim design.
The Kung Fu Grip is available in a range of different colours and finishes, including a few more colourful options. The case I’ve been testing for this review features a clear design and is the “Nothin to Hide” flavour. Like Gripzilla, the case can also be customised at an additional cost.
The case features the same Smartish design characteristics around the case, featuring textured sides to add extra grip as well as three grooves on each side to give it a more ergonomic shape. The grooves on this case are a lot more subtle as a result of the thin design but they are still nice to have.
The rest of the case is fairly simple and subtle, it features a far simpler back and on this clear design, it is a glossy finish. This does look great and has a nice feel, but it can become easily covered in fingerprints and smudges from use throughout the day. The inside of the back has a dotted finish that sits against the back of your device.
The front side of the case wraps around the display glass to add some added extra protection and the cut-outs are large, like Gripzilla. The case also has a little bump on each corner which adds a little extra case between the surface your phone may be falling onto and your phone itself – although this may be unique to the clear design. As a result of the thinner design, the space for protective elements is also thinner but the case feels well made and is easy to fit onto a device with little effort.
The Kung Fu Grip essentially brings the best bits of Gripzilla into a much thinner and sleeker design. So, if you’re a fan of thinner cases and don’t want something bulky, the Kungu Fu Grip is a good option – and it’s pretty cheap which is also nice.
Both the Gripzilla and Kungu Fu Grip cases from Smartish offer a nicely designed case that features some handy design features to give your phone a more secure grip in the hand for a relatively inexpensive price. But it would be nice to see them available for some Android devices in addition to the iPhone.
For an everyday case, the Kungu Fu Grip looks like a great option, but if you spend a lot of time on the move, or are a little clumsy, the added protection that the Gripzilla brings to the table may be worth the upgrade.
The Gripzilla and Kungu Fu Grip cases are both available to purchase on Amazon, or directly from Smartish.