If you’re anything like me, your phone dying is one of the most frustrating things in the world. The i-Blason Unicorn Beetle Power case for the iPhone 6 packs an additional 3200 mAh of power into a strong case that I’m pretty sure you could use as a self defense device in case you get caught in the middle of a brawl by feuding news teams*. Can the Unicorn Beetle case provide enough juice and protection for you to throw down at least $70? We explore below.
(*Not really, don’t do that)
Build And Protection
Boy this thing is sold. If you’re in the market for a case that provides a ton of protection and a battery backup, this one may be for you. Made out of dual layer of protective Thermoplastic Polyurethane and Polycarbonate the Unicorn Beetle Battery Power case will protect your phone from most any fall. I feel as comfortable with my phone in this as if it was in an Otterbox or Life Proof case. The materials provide not only fall protection but good slip protection as well. This will not be sliding off any tables and add grip when holding the phone. Adding to the solid construction is the addition of bumpers on all corners and two on each side in the middle for impact resistance. Due to how strong this case is, it’s not one your’re going to want to pull off and put on a bunch. The case is only two pieces that are simple (in theory) to take apart and put together but can be a real pain to line up.
The Unicorn Beetle has an included hard plastic belt clip as well. Belt clips are a lot of the time sold as accessories separately so we love that it’s included here. It’s light so you won’t be much more weighed down by using it and it protects the face of the phone while the case is clipped in. The hard plastic construction means that it won’t flex much which is what you want for a protective accessory. While it may change with extended use, the clip is a gigantic pain to turn. This obviously has some advantages and disadvantages as your phone won’t be spinning around on your hip but getting it to where you want it can be troublesome. Unfortunately you can’t face the phone out in the holster so you’ll have to pop the phone out to check any notifications.
After looking at pictures of the case on Amazon, I’m actually pretty surprised at how little bulk the case adds. Yes, there is going to be a significant increase due to the battery pack on the back and bottom of the phone. However, it’s not enough to make an aesthetics freak like me choose another case. The lip on the bottom is significant and will cause some issues with users that have smaller hands to reach the top of the screen but it does kick the audio from the speaker out of the front of the phone which is great. The sides and top of the phone remain generally bulk-free but due to the large lip on the bottom you’ll need to use the included extender to plug in your headphones.
The protection this case provides is obviously a major selling point but would you be spending $70 on the Unicorn Beetle if it was just a strong case with a belt clip? I didn’t think so. The battery component of this case is the major selling point for me. The Unicorn Beetle comes packed with a 3200 mAh battery that will charge you from zero to full once with some left over. The iPhone 6 battery is only 1810 mAh so even if there’s some power lost in conversion, you’re still going to get close to one and a half charges here. The Unicorn Beetle doesn’t automatically charge the phone which was bit strange to me. You have to hit the LED button on the back of the case to get it to start charging.
The LED button has several colors that correspond to the battery level of the case. White means the case has between 100 and 70% of the battery remaining, green means 70% – 35% of the battery remains, red indicates that you’re between 35% and 15% and when the red starts flashing, you’re dangerously low at under 15%. While I do like what they’ve done here with the light, I think a better system could have been used. Even in their own products like the Aero 10400 mAh portable battery charger a system of four lights is used to indicate the battery status. There’s nothing to figure out there, it’s very obvious and the LED is inventive but unless you read what each color means, you might know.
On full coverage phones, a lot of companies screw up the buttons that cover the mute switch, power button and volume buttons. The Unicorn Beetle actually does pretty well here. The buttons can be a bit mushy at times but do provide good feedback and coverage. The mute switch is left uncovered and due to the sides not being that bulky, it’s pretty easy to get to which is a nice surprise. Under that the volume buttons are covered up by two more rubber covers that are pretty mushy. They’re harder to hit than the power button but I feel like the longer you use the case, the better it might get. There’s sometimes a wear in period with cases like this so after that, you should be good to go.
The Unicorn Beetle may not be my perfect case but I can see a large segment of people loving this case. I don’t like that you can only charge the case through Micro USB cables since you’re using a phone that natively uses a lightning cable. There are no issues with syncing and charging due to the use of the port difference but it’s just another cable you have to keep around, especially if you go through cases a lot like I do. Also, while charging the LED on the back is really bright. Great for use during the day but since most of us charge our phones at night, I could definitely see it keeping someone up at night.
While it’s nice that your phone is completely covered in the belt clip, there’s no way to easily see your notifications. I would have liked to see the case be compatible front and back in the holster to alleviate this. Also, I feel there was a real missed opportunity with this case. It’s so close to being a Life Proof competitor that I would have liked to see the Unicorn Beetle add a screen protector to the case and close up some ports to make it waterproof. I understand there may be some engineering issues with that but I think it’s close enough now that they really could have taken some other companies to the mat.
On the other hand, the positives outweigh any negatives here. In addition to everything we pointed out in our review, I love how this case fits the phone. I don’t think my phone will be moving in the Unicorn Beetle at all. I’ve had issues with other cases scratching phones in the past and I have no doubt that this issue will be avoided. The lip over the front of the phone provides excellent face down protection. It is raised as high as other cases but feels slimmer so it isn’t interfering with any function of the phone.
If you’re going on vacation, this should absolutely be your phone case of choice. You should get at least two days charge under heavy use like GPS and lots of pictures. The huge battery inside the case will be a savior when you’re walking around. Do you really want to deal with a portable battery charger? Some, if not most, are clunky and charge slow. The Unicorn Beetle will have your phone filled up and ready to go for days at a time.