Tested: Smartish brings MagSafe to its slim Gripmunk cases with finger divots at $20

Smartish MagSafe Gripmunk Case for iPhone 12 review

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After featuring the new magnetic Cable Wrangler recently, it’s time to take a closer look at the Smartish MagSafe Gripmunk Case for iPhone 12. This new version of the Smartish classic carries the “super grippy” sides the brand’s previous-generation sheaths are known for as well as protective corners, an overall slim fit, and compatibility with Apple’s magnetic charging and accessory platform. Head below for our Smartish MagSafe Gripmunk Case review in the latest Tested with 9to5Toys feature. 

Smartish MagSafe Gripmunk Case for iPhone 12

Smartish MagSafe Gripmunk Case for iPhone 12, more specifically the iPhone 12 Pro for the purposes of this review, is a minimalist “black tie affair” that ships in a clear colorway with the MagSafe logo of sorts popping through the back as well as the black model you see on display for this review (you can just barely see the MagSafe logo through the black one, and only in the “right” light). 

This one sits in a nice middle ground between overly cumbersome and adding no protection at all with a barely-there design. It’s not the thinnest case out there, but it’s not overly thick, either, and adds what feels to me like a good amount of both scratch and drop protection. There are no specifics on drop protection ratings and the like available here, but the corner-mounted and hidden air pockets certainly seem as though they could handle a sizable 4-foot+ drop, although you won’t catch me personally dropping my iPhone 12 Pro to find out. 

Smartish MagSafe Gripmunk Case for iPhone 12 also features the brand’s (formerly known as) Kung Fu Grip finger divots. They are essentially a series of slight indents on either side of the case to offer up a sort unique grip and feel to the carrying experience. 

Smartish’s MagSafe Gripmunk Case for iPhone 12 goes for $19.99 in both of the aforementioned colors with the option to personalize the whole thing with images, artwork, and text for a total of $29.99

Here’s a quick look at the specs:

Get a grip with Gripmunk by Smartish. This case strikes the grip sweet spot, putting the odds against gravity ever-so-slightly in your favor. With its ultra-light and durable construction, it’s both thin and protected. The corner air-pockets (think airbags for your phone) truly corner the market on protection, and corny jokes. With a bezeled front, it also safely elevates your phone’s screen off the table and away from rough surfaces. You bezel believe it.

  • Super grippy sides
    • Just the right amount of grip, fewer toilet drops!
  • Ultra-light & durable construction
    • Thin and protected? It must have a life coach.
  • Protective air-pocket corners
    • Think airbags for your phone
  • Compatible with MagSafe
    • Wireless chargers find it highly attractive

9to5Toys’ Take

After going hands-on with the Smartish MagSafe Gripmunk Case wrapped around my iPhone 12 Pro for a couple weeks, I’m happy to report that it has been quite a pleasant experience. 

I thought I was going to hate the grippy sides here, but the indents are quite subtle — almost to the point where you might not notice they are even there at a quick glance — despite actually offering a noticeable difference in grip potential. I’m not sure they will 100% stop folks from dropping their phones, but they might, and I found them to be an enjoyable addition to the design here — even to the point where I miss them when holding other cases. 

There is a nice lip around the display and camera array on the back. The actual design and look of the camera lip is entirely functional and keeps the sensor of the tabletop indefinitely, but the overall look of it seems slightly messy or lacking symmetry to my eyes. Having said that, most folks probably wouldn’t even notice. 

Anyone who has read one of my iPhone case reviews before will know how much I hate an overly large lip around the display — they always get in the way of my thumb and finger swipes — but Smartish has sort of split the difference here, offering up more than enough lift for protection without really getting in my way. 

The light branding (there’s a small ”Smartish” tag-like logo on the back of the case) is a nice touch and doesn’t get in your face more than it should, either. A bad logo can ruin a great case, and Smartish nailed it here.  

In the end, I might even consider keeping the Smartish MagSafe Gripmunk Case around my iPhone 12 Pro indefinitely. I was never a huge fan of the brand’s cases, but now that I’ve gone hands-on with the new MagSafe-ready model and got my fingers on those grippy sides, the latest Gripmunk Case is here to stay for me. 

Buy the Smartish MagSafe Gripmunk Case

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