iPhone 5 Shell Holster Combo Case — A Review

The iPhone 5 needs a case. After spending all that money on the device, the last thing you need is the screen to shatter from either a drunken night or an unfortunate case of butter fingers. The iPhone 5 Holster Combo Case seemed like an interesting product to try out, so I gave it a shot to see how it fares as a protective cover and stylish accessory.

The Good

The iPhone 5 Shell Holster Combo Case is made of solid plastic that does a great job of protecting the back of the device. There’s no chance of the aluminium scratching with this case and the buttons are all exposed enough to still be usable.

Just as the name states, this case comes with a holster. If you’re a holster type of person, you’ll appreciate that it’s good quality and the clip is strong enough to keep your mind at ease that your iPhone won’t fall out.

Another feature of this case is that it comes with a clip for “hands-free media viewing”. The clip keeps the device propped up and if you’re the type to view a lot of media without wanting to hold the device, this could be the right case for you.

The price on the iPhone 5 Shell Holster Combo is pretty decent right now. It’s on sale for around $20, making it on the more affordable side of iPhone 5 cases.

The Bad

While the back of the case does a good job of protecting the back of the device, the plastic only comes around the front of the device a little. This gives the glass a little bit of protection, but it’s not clear if it’s actually going to protect the glass from cracking. How do you test for that? Ultimately, if the case doesn’t feel like it’s going to protect the screen, it probably won’t.

When the iPhone is placed inside the case, protected by both the back shell and the front holster, that’s when it’s really got the protection it needs. The problem is that it takes the strength of a hundred men and the patience of a saint to remove it from this quagmire. The case might loosen up given some time and usage, but when I first started using the case, it was so bad that I was looking for keys or a screwdriver to pry it out.


The best part of this case is that it has a little something for everyone. With a clip, holster and back plating, you get a few accessories all packed into one. The downside is that outside of its “super protective turtle mode”, it probably won’t stop your screen from cracking if dropped. Stylistically it’s a nice design and if I was travelling a lot I would definitely consider this case. For something a little more casual and more practical (i.e. can protect screen from drops), this may not be the best option on the market.

Kyle has been actively blogging and working in the mobile and web space for over 5 years. He's lived and worked abroad in countries such as Israel and South Korea and can speak both Hebrew and Korean poorly. Since then,… Full Bio