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Technology Today - May 2015 - Catalyst Waterproof
By Robert Sanborn

Ever since I got my first smartphone, I have been especially paranoid about keeping it clean and secure and so at a CES a couple years ago, I ran into a tiny startup company from Hong Kong, Catalyst Lifestyle and they had a case called the Lifeproof. You can read about it here. Well, they were back at CES and have come up with a new case for all sorts of devices. Since I have an Apple iPhone 5S, I needed something that would protect, and allow me to use the button finger print reader as well so I picked up the iPhone 5S Pacific Blue case ($64.99).  First thing I noticed was that the packaging is a bit cleaner and easier to get into and the instructions are pretty simple though you can go to their website at www.catalystlifestyle.com to see instructions as well as the rest of their product line.

What I like about putting it together is that it really is an easy to snap together shell. It consists of a front piece that the phone sits down into snugly, and then a back case with waterproof ring to seal it closed. So the first thing to do is to seal the case carefully, without your phone, and stick it in a tub of water for say half an hour to make sure the seals are solid. Next, you need to clean your phone because the case and screen will be protected and you only have to worry about the smudges you put on the protector that is part of the case front cover.

Waterproof case

If you run into any snags at all, take a look at the instruction videos they have put together. They really lead you through every step of the way.
I must say I have a few quibbles with it.  On my iPhone 5S, the mute control switch instantly turned the sound off when I install the phone in the case and you really have to push it very hard to turn it back on and off. You definitely don’t worry about it accidentally turning itself off. The second thing is that I got a lot of complaints that people can’t hear me very well when talking to them. Finally, I found a very cool charging cable from ChargerLeash, http://www.chargerleash.com/ that is perfect for travelers and discovered that the connection into the iPhone is too big for it to plug in so I can’t use it when traveling with your case.  The huge pluses for the Catalyst case is the rubber seal that really lets me know it is sealed; the new easy to pull out rubber seal at the bottom for the charger connection and the headphones and I really prefer to have the nice plastic screen protector. If I can get the sound issues taken care of, I will definitely keep it.

More from CES later.

Robert Sanborn

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