Bottom line: Although you may know dbrand for its wide variety of skins, the dbrand Grip is a case that's just as customizable. With extremely clicky buttons and a really grippy feel, your iPhone 13 Pro will never feel more secure in your hands.
Customizable with dbrand skins
A tad on the expensive side
Dust and dirt collect easily on the case
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It's been a while since I've reviewed a phone case, and that's because most cases I throw my iPhone 13 Pro into are pretty similar. Sure, there are thin, heavy-duty, silicone, hard plastic, and leather cases, but no case ever feels different enough to really stand out to me. Then I tried the dbrand Grip Case.
There's a reason this case made it onto our best iPhone 13 Pro cases list, and it's because it actually lives up to the hype.
dbrand Grip case: Price and availability
The dbrand Grip Case is only available through dbrand, and it costs about $40 - $45 depending on what phone model you have. However, dbrand carries the Grip Case for a lot of different phones — especially iPhone — models. So, even though I'm talking about my experience with the iPhone 13 Pro, if you like what you hear and want to get a Grip Case for your phone, chances are dbrand can hook you up.
dbrand Grip case: What you'll like
Many companies like to use various marketing buzz words to sell their products, and when the Grip Case first came around, dbrand was sure to let everyone know that it had made the grippiest case ever. It was probably the claim I was looking forward to testing the most, and I was delighted to find out that their marketing was accurate.
I've never felt a case like this before, and it feels so secure in the hand. The entire edge of the case — you know, the part you grip onto — has this rough texture that feels a little weird but nigh impossible to drop. It's almost like running your hand against extra-fine grit sandpaper. Plus, the little bars along the side do provide a great place to rest your fingers without them sliding down and off the phone.
The way the case curves so that the edges of the case and the middle section of the phone are almost flush also helps to ensure that your phone stays in your hand. At the same time, it still allows you to swipe and tap on your screen with ease. With some more heavy-duty cases, the lip around the edge of the iPhone can get in the way of swiping up to unlock your phone or pulling down on the Control Center. The smaller lip on the dbrand case eliminates this issue. Don't worry, though; there is still a lip, so you can continue to lay your iPhone screen down and it will be just fine.
Of course, the biggest reason to get a dbrand phone case is all the skins you can buy. The back of the dbrand Grip Case is perfect for applying the wide variety of skins available to spice up your iPhone. With different patterns, colors, and even textures available, you'll likely find something you like. Just remember that grabbing a skin is an extra cost.
dbrand Grip Case: What you won't like
Honestly, I only really have two complaints about the dbrand case, and both are pretty minor.
First, the case is a bit pricey. The iPhone case market is huge, and there are a ton of great cases out there that come in a lot cheaper than what dbrand offers. To dbrand's credit, there is nothing that is an exact copy, but if the idea of spending $40+ on an iPhone case makes your skin crawl, the Grip Case isn't for you.
Lastly, the texture that makes the case so dang grippy also collects and attracts dust and dirt like no tomorrow. If you look at the photo above, you can see all the dust that's collected on the side of the case, and that's only a few seconds after wiping the case and phone down.
dbrand Grip Case: Competition
While it's not similar in style, the PopSockets PopCase is a great way to get a grip on your iPhone. Not only can you modify the placing of the PopSocket on the back to get the most comfortable grip possible, but you can also even switch the grip out for different colors. This offers some similar customization like the dbrand Grip Case.
If you don't care about the drband skins at all, the Speck Presidio2 Grip with MagSafe feels very secure in hand thanks to its textured ridges. It also offers 13-foot drop protection so it's no slouch when it comes to protecting your phone. It's about the same price as the dbrand Grip Case, but it does have a more traditional lip around the edges of the phone, which some people like better than the smaller lip on the Grip Case.
Honestly, cases are such a personal style that all cases compete with each other. All the best iPhone 13 cases can be pretty comparable depending on what you're looking for in a case. I will say, I personally haven't tried anything as grippy as the dbrand Grip, but there are plenty of options that are just as protective and even customizable in their own way.
dbrand Grip Case: Should you buy it?
You should buy this if ...
- Like thin but protective cases
- Want a case that won't fall out of your hand
- Like dbrand skins
You shouldn't buy this if...
- You don't want to spend $45 on a case
- You're bothered by dust collecting on cases
If you don't want to spend $40+, the Grip Case just isn't for you. Other than that, I can't find any major flaws with the Grip Case, making it an excellent choice for many people.
For me, it really comes down to that grippy feel. I love it so much because the phone feels extremely secure in my hand, and as a bit of a klutz, I need that feature.
Yes, the texture can be a little odd to get used to at first, and if you're particularly picky about the cleanliness of your phone, all the dust the case collects may irk you a little. But, its military-grade drop protection and customizability with skins really complete the entire package to offer a very compelling iPhone case.
Luke Filipowicz has been a writer at iMore, covering Apple for nearly a decade now. He writes a lot about Apple Watch and iPad but covers the iPhone and Mac as well. He often describes himself as an "Apple user on a budget" and firmly believes that great technology can be affordable if you know where to look. Luke also heads up the iMore Show — a weekly podcast focusing on Apple news, rumors, and products but likes to have some fun along the way.
Luke knows he spends more time on Twitter than he probably should, so feel free to follow him or give him a shout on social media @LukeFilipowicz.