LifeProof A Year Later – The Ugly Truth

So it took me a long time to write this post. The incident happened July of last year, and I’m just now finally able to put my thoughts together an update post. I was pretty embarrassed. There’s no real sugar coating what happened. After blabbing about how great LifeProof is….

My          LifeProof          case          failed.

Yup. There you have it. Before you write off LifeProof & click away, please hang out long enough for me to tell you the whole story and my thoughts on the case overall.

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I received the LifeProof case at the end of February. In my time of owning it, the case successfully passed the water test, survived two mud runs, swam in a swimming pool, runs while shoved in my sports bra, messy cooking in the kitchen, showers and more. The case worked every time without fail. It was amazing. I fell in love.

As one typically does with new, young love, I decided to take my new love on a mini vacation scalloping in the Gulf. I had this grand idea that I would create an instructional post on ‘how to scallop” since I figured many people may not realize how easy and fun it is especially with the Gulf being practically in our backyard.

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On the first day of scalloping, I headed out to get my technique down before I began taking photos. A few hours later, things were going well. I asked my friend, Derek, who was relaxing on the boat at the time to pass me my iPhone. He was really hesitant and even said “I don’t feel good about this…” I of course responded “You’re being silly. It’s Life Proof!”


The LifeProof and I took a few romantic dives together. We caught a scallop. We took a picture of some fishies. Then suddenly without warning, a SIM card error popped up on the screen. (I admit, I didn’t even know the iPhone HAD a SIM card. I know. I’m silly.) Obviously this was alarming, so I headed back to the boat. Once on board, I inspected closer and realized there was a slight bubble of water on the screen INSIDE THE CASE. I panicked. Ripped the phone OUT of the LifeProof case (which is a bit challenging with wrinkly hands), and carefully wrapped it up in a dry towel.

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Needless to say, it was a quiet ride home.

When I got home, I immediately put the phone in a bag of rice praying to salvage it. I turned it on the next day and it halfway worked. The screen was blinking for me to plug it in and giving me an notice to reconnect my iPhone to iTunes. I did this and it began performing an update…. but always disconnected before it could complete.

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I unplugged the phone. Looking at the coils where the cord would connect, I could see why it was having issues. There was some corrosion on the phone. THANKFULLY the ‘red dot’ that indicates water damage was not lit up. I looked down the headphone cord area, and the red dot there wasn’t lit up either.

I made a Genius Bar appointment and headed in. Once there, they were baffled as I was. (Of course, I didn’t tell them the whole story. I just told them it was acting funny.) Since there was no apparent water damage, they allowed me to purchase a refurbished phone at a discounted price of… $150.

Ouch. But I needed a phone, so I forked over the cash and headed home with my new phone.

Since I had received the case as a blogger with the purpose of reviewing it, I emailed Lifeproof to try and learn more about what may have gone wrong. They were completely helpful (I’m a blogger, so I’m assuming that may have had an impact). They said it’s not normal proceedure to do so, but asked me to mail in my Lifeproof case so they could inspect it and learn more about what happened.

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A week later, I got an email with this photo. According to the engineer at LifeProof he said:

“It appears as if the case has been well used, but it was a hole in the earpiece vent that was the one item that caused the case to flood.Holes in the vent are an issue that can occur when they come in contact with sharp objects. We continue to look at ways to address this issue. There were also hairline cracks in the frame, which is usually due to multiple drops. LifeProof has made a significant improvement to case materials to alleviate this issue. This change is invisible to customers – the cases look and function the same, they are just stronger.”

Oy. Well, I never denied the fact that I’m rough on my phone. I am sure it happened one of the 1,254 times I dropped the phone on pavement (which the case protected my phone each and every time). Or it could have happened when I shoved my phone in my purse. My keys or some other remotely sharp object may have every so gently rubbed on that little earphone portion causing the small tear.

So, what case do I use for my phone now? Actually, it’s still a LifeProof case. (A teal one like the Jaguars!) I’m still crazy about LifeProof, just a little less bold with it. (No more swimming pools for one thing.) I still honestly believe it’s the best case for me and my phone. I have no plans to go swimming with it, but feel confident in it’s ability to protect my phone from drops and spills. I also feel confident if I were accidentally pushed into a pool with my phone in my pocket, it would survive the few seconds under water. I spill stuff on it all the time while cooking. I still use it in the shower. I still shove it in my sports bra while running.

To me, this is still the best iPhone case I’ve used to date.


**Lifeproof provided me the case for free in exchange for my honest opinions. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own and not influenced by Lifeproof.**

4 thoughts on “LifeProof A Year Later – The Ugly Truth

    1. It’s pretty helpful if you’re waiting on an important phone call. Nothing’s more annoying than missing a call because you were in the shower!

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