Did you buy an iPhone 6 when Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) first released the new, bigger, iPhone back in September? If you did, you probably ran into the same issue I did: a paltry selection of iPhone 6 cases.
The previous year, there was no such problem. The iPhone 5s was identical to the iPhone 5 in form factor, so there thousands of cases available.
The iPhone 6 was a completely new look so that meant starting all over again for case manufacturers. And because the iPhone was so thin it was the first smartphone I’ve bought where I believed a protective case was a must-have.
The first few days were a little nerve-wracking. I finally made it to an Apple Store and picked up one of the few iPhone 6 case options available at launch and breathed a sigh of relief.
Six months later, supply has ramped up and once again there are thousands to choose from — so many it can be confusing.
To help out on that front, here are six excellent iPhone 6 cases to fit any situation.
6 of the Best iPhone 6 Cases: Apple Leather Case
One of the smartest-looking iPhone 6 cases you can buy is offered by Apple.
The form fitting, microfiber-lined iPhone 6 Leather case ($45) provides basic protection from bumps and scratches while offering a smooth, luxurious grip. A slight lip protects the display if placed face down on a surface. Naturally, the case is emblazoned with the Apple logo.
Offered in black, midnight blue, olive brown, soft pink and red, the premium leather used by Apple ages nicely. I’ve had a blue one for six months and over time it’s become softer and “worn in” looking without losing its color.
6 of the Best iPhone 6 Cases: Material6 for iPhone 6
Not everyone wants ballistic-grade protection for their smartphone. Some people just want something to protect that aluminum back from scratching and a bumper to provide a bit of shock protection, but also adds virtually nothing in the way of bulk to their iPhone 6.
Some people turn to skins — peel off vinyl stickers. I like the Material6 for iPhone 6 ($29).
It provides a bumper that keeps the buttons and ports completely clear (it uses removable suction tape to attach to the iPhone) and protects the entire back of the device from scratching. I have one — I can confirm the case can be removed without damage to it or the iPhone, and that the tape can be reused.
But instead of a mass-produced plastic sticker, the back is an ultra-thin veneer of wood (you choose from four species). The wood case complements the iPhone 6 and adds some warmth. It can also be personalized with a laser-etched monogram or, for a small additional fee, a personalized design.
6 of the Best iPhone 6 Cases: Morphie Juice Pack Air for iPhone 6
One of the things every smartphone owner ends up wishing for at one point or another is longer battery life. Some power users run out of juice long before the day is over and have to resort to external power packs or carrying a recharger (and searching for an outlet).
Morphie is one of the companies that sells those external power packs. It also makes protective cases. And in the Morphie Juice Pack Air for iPhone 6 ($99.95) it combines the two: a protective case with a built-in battery.
The downside is that this is a relatively bulky case. However, you get good protection from shocks and drops on the sides and back, and the raised bezel edge protects the iPhone 6 display. And that thick back conceals a battery that doubles the amount of time the phone can go without recharging.
Connect this iPhone 6 case to power and it automatically recharges the smartphone first, then tops off the backup battery.
6 of the Best iPhone 6 Cases: Loop Straitjacket for iPhone 6
The Loop Straitjacket ($34.95) is one of the more unique-looking iPhone 6 cases out there.
A hard plastic bumper surrounds the iPhone, providing basic shock and bump protection and a lip to keep the display safe when placed on a table. The back of the iPhone is left largely visible (so you can enjoy that gold finish you waited an extra month to get), but a series of flexible straps crisscross it.
The straps provide impact protection for the back without completely obstructing it (or the Apple logo) and also offer a spot to secure a few credit cards — just in case you run into a retailer who won’t accept Apple Pay …
6 of the Best iPhone 6 Cases: Krown Slim Aluminum iPhone 6 Case
You don’t have to give up the iPhone 6’s slim profile or its aluminum back panel in the name of protection.
The Krown Slim Aluminum iPhone 6 Case is a lightweight, form-fitting protective aluminum shell. It’s lined with soft rubber to protect your phone from bumps and there are cutouts for all the buttons and ports.
The brushed aluminum back panel ensures your iPhone 6 is safe from scratches, without adding bulk. It’s available in a range of colors including red, black and gold.
I’ve used one for the past month and the aluminum shell does not interfere with the iPhone’s Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or cellular capabilities.
6 of the Best iPhone 6 Cases: Grove Maple and Leather iPhone 6 Case
Finally, my current favorite among iPhone 6 cases.
You may already have gathered that I’m a sucker for natural materials such as wood and leather.
The Grove Maple and Leather iPhone 6 Case combines both of these materials in a luxurious, hand-crafted case.
The iPhone itself is held securely in a precision cut eastern hardrock maple frame that’s been CNC milled, hand-stained and hand-sanded. All the ports are accessible (I didn’t even have to use a headphone extender, which was surprising given the thickness of the wood), the buttons are covered by laser-cut walnut and everything is wrapped in premium vegetable-tanned leather.
Discretely hidden magnets keep the case closed.
The Grove case is also multi-functional — it has a clever wood inlay inside the front cover that not only provides rigidity for the leather, it’s scored with slots that let the case fold and act as a secure, adjustable easel stand for the iPhone 6.
If you think your iPhone 6 is a work of art that deserves to be encased in something fitting, consider the grove maple and leather iPhone 6 case. At $129, it’s not cheap, but it’s one of those rare protective cases that not only adds to the premium feel of your smartphone, it gets better looking with time.
As of this writing, Brad Moon did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.