Review: Griffin Wave for iPhone 3G

The Griffin Wave for iPhone 3G uses a unique wave lock design to create a snug fit for the iPhone and offer solid protection. The hard plastic case was unique among competitor’s offerings because instead of choosing a slide mechanism to connect the case together, it uses a front piece and a back piece to hold the iPhone. Does the Griffin Wave succeed as a case? We think so. Read on to see why.

Read on for the rest of the review!


The Griffin Wave for iPhone 3G is a hard plastic case that offers protection for the chrome rim, corners, and entire back of the iPhone. It comes in four color choices and allows accessibility to all the ports, switches, buttons and jacks on the iPhone.

As mentioned before, the Wave case comes in two parts. Unlike other cases which offer a top and bottom slide mechanism, the Griffin Wave opts to use a front piece and a back piece—held together via the interlocking wave design. To explain it briefly, the wave shaped closure overlap and inserts into each other to create a very, very snug and secure fit. It kind of looks like DNA.

The polycarbonate of the Griffin Wave is clear and the wave lock design is very pleasing to the eye. The helix design adds a certain amount of depth and improves the look of the iPhone 3G.  


I found that the material used in the Griffin Wave feels great in the hand. Though it is unmistakably a hard plastic case, there is a soft touch rubber feel to it and the iPhone feels safe inside. I believe that Griffin found a great compromise with soft cases and hard cases in the Wave. Whereas soft cases offer better grip, it often loosens over time. The benefit of a hard case is that it soundly protects the iPhone without wear and tear. But the main problem is it typically adds too much thickness and that the material doesn’t provide for much grip.

In the Wave's case, it combines both the sturdiness of a hard case with the tactile feel of a soft case. I loved the added depth and dimension of the material and found it very pleasing to hold. Also the clear polycarbonate material allows you to see the Apple logo on the iPhone and gives off a better look than an all plastic material would.

All the ports and switches of the iPhone are made available with the Wave case. The hole for the camera is exact. Because of such precise cuts along the ports and openings, it leaves little room for dust to settle and build up. Though it does add some amount of thickness, I didn’t find it to be bothersome.

However, the case doesn’t seem to match up exactly where the front portion and the back portion meet. This is odd considering everything else about the Wave is so exact and beautiful. Though the slight opening might only affect the most nit picky of people, it is a design flaw nonetheless. The packaged plastic screen protector is a throwaway, it diminishes the iPhone’s sensitivity and is difficult to use. Spring for a adhesive screen.

Final Thoughts

The Griffin Wave for iPhone 3G is a subtly styled, great feeling case. Griffin really did a good job with the Wave and its unique locking system not only offers a secure fit but also adds to the design. I think if you were looking for a hard case for the iPhone 3G, you couldn’t do much better in regards to look, feel, and all around security than the Griffin Wave.  


  • Unique closure system
  • Great Design
  • Adds minimal thickness
  • All ports are accessible


  • Back and Front portions don't meet up exactly
  • Packaged Plastic Screen Protector is a throwaway



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Reader comments

Review: Griffin Wave for iPhone 3G


not another post for an item you are trying to sell in your store!! A case which doesn't close properly and its screen protector "is a throwaway" and you give it 4.5 out of 5??? Ha ha, this is getting ridiculous. If you are going to post items you are trying to sell us, you should also be posting items you sell which are no good to have fair and balanced approach to your posts. Stop trying to sell us stuff please. Love the site.

I like this case, but just threw mine away, the top part broke making it useless.I also threw away the plastic protector. Still I conceder buying another, it feels good in the hand, doesn't slip, is easy to take a part and clean. Im not sure its worth 30 bucks if it will break in 2 months

no case for my iphone. just the military grade clear sheild from zorg or whatever the name is..

Check out the cases from Switcheasy - great quality, prices and customer service!
I have literally about 12 cases of all makes for my iPods/iPhone and they make great product.
Check em out!
I have to agree with the rating rants here - 4.5 stars?
Come on now...

I have this case since I got my iPhone in July. The rubberized cover is actually peeling away a bit on the surface by the screen where I usually hold it with my fingers. Annoying, but it was the nicest and sleekest looking cover I could find at the time.

The screen protector might be a throwaway, yes, but Griffin changed the protector on my NuForm (which I believe is the same) for free! Now I've got an adhesive-type screen protector.
Beside that, I've just recently switched to the Wave, because I had the white NuForm and the lower (removable) part became looking grubby very soon :-(

you,re right scottb switch easy cases are the way to go!! Cheap chearfull colourfull stylish and work great. 4.5 out of five?? Ha ha ha.

Since you are recommending that the overlay be chucked in the trash, could you or anyone provide a recommendation of another adhesive based overlay that may be a better option? There seems to be a few of them out there, but something about paying $15 to $20 for 3 pieces of adhesive plastic sounds out of whack.

I love this case. I took a long time to find the right case, and this is protective while not being too bulky. I actually use the plastic screen cover that came with it, as it is responsive to the touch. Definitely worth the money.

After searching for a couple of weeks, I decided on this case in pink. I did like the way it felt in my hand. It didn't quite meet at one of the top corners which bothered me. I decided to return it when, after using it for less than a week, the pink started scraping off on the side. I was very unhappy with it. I'm still looking for the perfect case.