While I was at Macworld/iWorld 2013 last month, I had the pleasure of meeting with the folks from Newer Technology at the OWC booth. One item that they were showing off at the booth was NewerTech's NuGuard KX for iPhone 5 (US$35.00), a case that manages to provide MIL-STD-810G drop protection while not adding a lot of bulk. Let's take a look.
Looking at the NuGuard KX, you'd probably think that it's just another iPhone case, but the special characteristics of the design are built into the case. Rather than being a two or three piece case, Newer Technology has managed to cram all of the protection into a one-piece structure. There's a "X-Orbing" gel that absorbs impact energy and distributes it to keep your iPhone 5 from being damaged, surrounded by a hard (yet flexible) shell.
I recall watching OWC spokesman Alan Bitterman tossing his NuGuard KX-protected iPhone 5 onto the ground at the expo, and figuring that he wouldn't be doing that if he didn't have a lot of confidence in the design. NewerTech had Quanta Laboratories perform and film the drop testing required to get the MIL-STD designation, and the company also dropped a phone from the top of the OWC wind turbine. I can see where Bitterman got his confidence.
The NuGuard KX comes in a variety of colors: Darkness (black), Trooper (white), Midnight (blue), Roulette Red, Buzz (yellow and black), Rose (magenta and white), Eagle Shield (tan and brown) and Nubar Forest (forest green).
The NuGuard KX is a piece of cake to install and remove, perfect if you want protection for those times you're hiking but don't want a case on your iPhone 5 all the time. The case has a nice felt-like material on the inside to keep your iPhone 5 from being scratched, a wide hole for the camera and flash, "pass-through" buttons for volume and sleep/wake/on/off, and holes for the speakers, Lightning port, headphone port, and mute button.