Review: iWood 4 Wooden iPhone Case By Miniot

Stained Wood is classy. It’s practically the universal symbol of classy, which is why I tracked down a wooden case for my iPhone, and the case I found was Miniot’s iWood 4, carved out of a whole block of cherry (mine was- other woods are available), and made in Holland. It’s certainly not a cheap case though, ringing in at $107 plus international shipping, so you pay to look good, and this case has a dark side, so you may want to read my review below the photos.

Miniot sent me their Cherry iPhone case to test only a week ago, but I’ve already made my conclusions on this case based on its’ one week performance, and they’re not good. Let’s start with its’ strong points.

Strong Points:

It looks great. The design really emphasizes the grain of the wood, and it feels nice in the hand. The volume buttons are wooden and laser engraved with symbols to match the theme of the wood.  It’s lined with rubber on the inside to provide shock absorption  and they’re even thoughtful enough to distribute flash bounce stickers that keep the case from affecting the flash on your photos. It’s made of a single piece of wood, and it’s beautifully constructed. They have a variety of colors, and the stain protects it nicely from scratches. It also makes a great conversation piece. I had about three people per day asking me where I got it, and what it was. Unfortunately I had to share with them my disappointment.

The Weak Points:

The day I got the case I noticed a hairline crack on the frame of the case. Within days two larger cracks had appeared. Considering I’d used the same case for a year without issue, I found this to be concerning. A quick Google search revealed that this has happened to a few other people with iWoods as well. The damage wasn’t bad enough to destabilize the case, but the splintered wood did keep getting caught on my shorts. I can’t recommend a case this unstable, no matter how insanely classy it looks.

The Verdict:

It’s a seriously good looking case, and Miniot will even laser engrave your logo into it, which makes it even awesomer, but the wood quality means it’s not a case that will most likely last you long. Buy at your own risk. Considering that wood didn’t work out, I’m on the market for a leather or dark matte metal case to try on my quest to find the classiest case. I’ll keep you updated.

Editors note: The manufacturer of this case contacted us and advised us that the cracking of this case could have been caused by user error. We maintain that this is a possibility, but that at least part of the fault lies with a flawed design which can lead to such catastrophic damage. Part of it is the medium: Wood breaks. We do think that the performance we experienced was unacceptable though.

Michael Sitver

Michael Sitver is a technology insider who has been blogging about technology since 2011. Along the way, he's interviewed founders of innovative startups, and executives from fortune 500 companies, and he's tried dozens or hundreds of gadgets. Michael has also contributed to works featured in Newsday, The San Francisco Chronicle, and the associated press. Michael also occasionally consults, and writes for Seeking Alpha and Yahoo News.

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