Raise your hand if your phone is funny-shaped. (You can put it down now — no one can see you.) If you belong to the Funny-Shaped Phone Club, chances are you have shared my pain — it’s darned near impossible to find a decent case for your phone. My particular headaches are a sleek silhouette and a slide-out keyboard. I’ve got to give credit for ingenuity to some of the marvels of engineering out there that attempt to do the job of covering it, but effectiveness is harder to find.
I was just about ready to resign myself to carrying my Touch Pro around wrapped in a handkerchief. But before I threw in the towel, I ran across one of Proporta’s newer cases, the Maya. High tech it is not; it’s a pouch. No flaps, no cutouts, no fasteners. I’d always been leery of pouch cases because most of them seemed to be one size fits all (translation: it’ll fit everything badly) and I didn’t like the idea of fumbling with it to answer a call. However, the way my case hunt had been going, the simplicity of a pouch was appealing.
I’ve now been using the Maya case for several months, so it’s well broken-in and I’ve had a chance to see how well it holds up under long-term daily use. All of my pictures are recent. But before I go into the details, let’s take a look at the case.
As you can see in the image up top, the Maya case comes in numerous colors. I opted for the brown. It’s a nice rich coffee color, and the blue stripe is a bit darker and more aqua in person. Overall it’s classy with a personality, and I’ve gotten lots of compliments on it at work.
The “leather” is faux but it looks and feels good, with a soft pebbled texture. Stitching is solid and even, and the contrast effect from the white thread is just enough without being overwhelming. Branding is a cute little armadillo tag on the side and a subtle name-stamp (on my case it’s on the back instead of where it is in the picture). On the back side, there’s a small D-shaped metal ring (so you can… hang it on a hook?) attached to a sewn-on tab.
Proporta sharpened up their branding not long before I got this case, and their packaging has definitely stepped up as well — and they still send you a British tea bag with your order. When I opened up the package the case was shipped in, I did have a brief moment of concern. My phone is the Touch Pro, and the version of the Maya case I got said iPhone. The fit actually turned out to be very good, and it would probably be even better for the iPhone.
After nearly six months, the Maya case looks almost as good as the day I got it. And trust me, I have not taken it easy on the poor case. If you held up a magnifying glass you’d see a bit of fuzzing along the color accent strips, a few tiny cuts along the top rim, and some edge memory where my phone sits at the bottom. My one quibble is that the top of the tab where the metal ring is attached has parted from the case body, and if you pull it back you can see a bald spot. The stitching should have gone up a little higher, because where it is the attachment is rock solid — there’s no way that ring is going anywhere. I expect the Maya case to look as good in twelve months as it has after six.
One of my main concerns with a pouch case was that it would be too hard to get the phone in and out to use it. Turns out I shouldn’t have worried. The Maya case has a velvety lining that not only protects the screen from scratches but also makes it very easy to slide the phone in and out. I just turn it upside down and my phone glides out into my hand.
The reason you get a case in the first place is to protect your phone. Since the Maya case covers the whole phone it does a terrific job of protecting it from getting scratched up in a pocket or purse. It also provides a little bit of padding if you drop your phone. However, it won’t do anything to protect against crushing, and you do have to be careful not to turn it upside down by mistake because the phone will fall out. For normal daily use, though, it does the job.
The Maya case is so soft, it’s like tucking your phone into a fun and stylish striped bed. At under $20 the price is right too. You can order one directly from Proporta (on sale for $14.95) or through their US-based partner Skooba Design ($19.95).
What I Liked: soft feel, cute styling (love the stripes!), fit and convenience of the pouch design, durability
What Could Improve: not a perfect custom fit for my phone, stitching for metal ring