Some folks are prone to dropping (or throwing) iPhones, and some have job sites that are hazardous to phones made of glass. AppleCare+ is excellent, but it's better not to have to hassle with repairs if you don't have to. Here are some of the best heavy-duty cases for the iPhone XS Max to help your case survive any mishaps that may befall it.
A clear choice
Lifeproof offers several top heavy-duty cases; if you don't need the extra waterproofing offered by the Frē, the Nëxt is still dirt-proof, snow-proof, and drop-proof. A touch of color in the bumper and a clear back gives protection without obscuring the beauty of the phone.
Waterproof, drop-proof, dirt-proof, and snow-proof: the Lifeproof Frē is the ultimate choice for protection. Lifeproof has quite a following and inspires brand loyalty. My daughter's fiancé once dropped his iPhone out of a four-story window. The phone survived; now, he won't buy any other brand case.
Another clear option
With military-grade protection, and drop tested to 6 feet onto concrete, X-Doria is a reasonably-priced option. With a clear back and black bumper, you can still keep your iPhone's good looks on display.
Protection and Grip
Speck makes unusual cases, and their Presidio line is one of the most protective. While still being relatively slim, this dual-layer case has been drop tested to 10 feet. The Presidio Grip comes in lots of fun color combinations. The bit of flex in the corners makes all the difference in getting this case on and off easily.
Front and back protection
This reasonably priced case covers both the front and back of the iPhone with a built-in screen protector. It's dual-layered and military drop tested. The back is clear and scratch-resistant, and it has a touch of color around the edges for a bit of style.
This minimalist heavy-duty case is military drop tested while remaining slim. A clear polycarbonate back allows the iPhone's beauty to shine through. A touch of color around the TPU bumper enhances its looks. This bargain-priced case comes in several color combinations.
This three-layer case offers tough protection with a feminine touch. It has a plastic back cover, a plastic bumper, and a silicone inner frame. It comes in three pretty patterns, has a window for the Apple logo, and carries but a small price tag.
This full front and back coverage case is military drop-tested to 6.6 feet. The SPIDERCASE is dust-proof, dirt-proof, snow-proof, and fully-sealed IP68 certified waterproof for a fraction of the price of the Lifeproof case.
Protection and a kickstand
Spigen is my son's favorite brand. Between the bargain price and the robust protection (he's been known to toss his iPhone from time to time), Spigen Tough Armor is an exceptional case. A built-in kickstand flips out so you can watch videos, hands-free.
Ultra-light heavy duty
Urban Armor Gear (UAG) makes strong, protective cases that remain feather-light. This cool, masculine-styled, military drop-tested case is constructed from five layers, including leather and metal. The honeycomb bumper adds a good grip without bulk.
Otterbox is a trusted name in protective cases, and the sleek Symmetry is one of its slimmest options. It comes in several different colors. It's not quite as protective as their heavier-duty options.
The Otterbox Defender is the first high-level protection case I'd ever heard of. It's been popular for a long time for good reason. The Defender is the big, bulky case that comes to mind when you think of Otterbox. This multi-layer case comes with a holster that can also be used as a kickstand for watching videos.
Defend that Case
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I personally don't usually prefer heavy-duty cases, but when it's necessary, the Lifeproof Nëxt is my go-to. This brand of cases makes any iPhone virtually indestructible, and its clear backing lets the iPhone's natural beauty shine through.
If you prefer a slightly thinner case with lots of color choices, check out the Speck Presidio Grip instead. This one also has a pretty attractive price point. A heavy-duty case isn't always the most handsome case you can find, but if you're prone to dropping (or throwing) phones, or if your workplace calls for serious protection, you've got to go heavy-duty.
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Karen is a contributor to iMore.com as a writer and co-host of the iMore Show. She’s been writing about Apple since 2010 with a year-long break to work at an Apple Store as a product specialist. She's also a contributor at CNET. Before joining iMore in 2018, Karen wrote for Macworld, AppAdvice, WatchAware. She’s an early adopter who used to wait in long lines on release days before pre-ordering made things much easier. Karen is also a part-time teacher and occasional movie extra. She loves to spend time with her family, travel the world, and is always looking for portable tech and accessories so she can work from anywhere.