Blackberry Curve skins are the first accessory any Blackberry owner should invest in. The protection of the device from the wear and tear of everyday use is a priority for this kind of multi-faceted device. Whatever application is used, the chance of dropping, slipping, scratching, or otherwise hurting the pretty brushed-metal case necessitates some thought in how to protect it.
Function over Form
Of course, a protective Blackberry Curve skin is not very useful if it interferes with either the operation or viewing of the Blackberry. While holsters are convenient for the hip, if a Curve is carried in a purse or briefcase, they don't offer the same kind of convenience. Likewise, all-encompassing cases such as the Rhinoskin Hard Case claim to offer "slim design" but the cut-outs for access end up making everyday operation an awkward process. The "removable swivel clip" also adds a level of bulkiness to the case which defeats the purpose of the Curve's initial great design.
Blackberry Curve skins, on the other hand, are made of tough and flexible materials such as rubber, silicone and plastic, providing anti-static shock absorption and a wide range of colors. An example of this would be the Flexiskin by BoxWave. Want your own color? Choose from
- coral pink
- frosted clear
- future blue
- jet black
- sea green
- smoke gray
While the colors available to various versions of Blackberry Curve skins may vary product to product and brand to brand, there are some characteristics that can be counted on to apply to all of the skins. Aside from offering access to the Curve buttons such as camera, the side convenience button, volume, as well as openings for the camera, flash, and self portrait mirror in the back, these features should also be taken into account:
- Soft or smooth to the touch
- Reduces surface dust
- Low-profile case
- Form-fitting to precisely fit the BlackBerry Curve
- Cut-outs for the keyboard often enabling keyboard use as if there were no case at all
- Options for open screen or covered center
- Made of anti-slip material giving more surface grip
- Tough, hard to tear, and washable
Personalized Blackberry Curve Skins
Sometimes color isn't enough for adding that customized personal touch to your PDA phone. While they don't offer quite as much protection as the Flexiskin style, there are also skins such as the UniqueSkins process. They are able to let users to upload their own pictures or designs to create a completely individualized Blackberry Curve skins. These also feature:
- Precision fit
- Vibrant color
- High gloss finish
- Made with 3M Controltac with Comply - very durable
- Air release channels for bubble free application
- Non-permanent backing
- Does not void your warranty
- Seconds to install
- Do not fade, wear, or smear
- No residue when removed
- Will not damage your Blackberry Curve
- According to the website, will last for years.
As you can tell, one of the disadvantages of having a skin like the UniqueSkin (that is a stick-on) is the necessity of applying it yourself. This can be a tedious and frustrating process. While it is possible to take it off again and again, this also increases the odds of tearing. The "Controltac" material is tough, but it doesn't provide the same level of protection that the plastic, silicone and rubber skins do.
Class and Sophistication of Leather
One last category of skins would be those made of natural materials, usually leather but also some of cloth design. While they don't offer as much customization as the UniqueSkin and are not as all-weather resistant as the Flexiskin design, there is a tactile pleasure to leather that cannot be matched. They also offer shock and static protection, and can be customized to the extent of choosing different patterns and embossed designs. Another advantage of the leather type of skin is that they often include pockets for media such as SD cards or business cards. However, they will be substantially more expensive than the other types of skins.
With the popularity of the Curve still surpassing the iPhone and even the new Palm Centro, there is sure to continue to be a wide array of choices to protect it. Personalizing and protecting your device is simply a matter of choosing the right style for you.