This insane iPhone case packs a fully functional Android phone

esti eye case 55158c843014929e1489519361
Let’s face it: No mobile operating system is perfect. Apple’s iOS has awesome features that Google’s Android doesn’t, and Android boasts some sweet apps and tools that iOS can’t match. Since the dawn of the modern smartphone, though, it’s been impossible to get the best of both worlds — you’ve had to settle for an Android phone or an iPhone. But the Eye wants to change that.

The Eye, which launched Monday on Kickstarter, is ostensibly an iPhone case with a rear-facing 5-inch display. In reality, it’s a fully functional Android smartphone replete with two SIM card slots, 3GB of memory, an octa-core MediaTek Helio P20 processor, a 2,800mAh battery, and up to 256GB of storage (via MicroSD slot). And it’s just as bulky as you’d expect.

Size aside, though, the Eye’s creators make an interesting pitch. The 5-inch Full HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) AMOLED screen is reportedly the “best […] on the market,” and the Eye’s MicroSD cards double as storage for your iPhone via a Lightning connector. Its battery extends your phone’s battery life, too, and enables wireless charging via Qi — you can stick the Eye on a compatible pad and it’ll charge your iPhone.

That’s only the tip of the iceberg. The Eye can mirror the connected iPhone’s camera preview screen so that you can take selfies with the rear-facing camera. Its dual SIM card slots deliver 4G LTE speeds up to 300Mbps, and its 3.5mm jack and dedicated DAC (digital to analog converter) let you use a conventional pair of headphones with the otherwise port-free iPhone 7.

And there’s more. An NFC (Near Field Communication) radio allows you to program NFC stickers, and send files and pictures to another NFC-support phone. And an infrared blaster lets you control home appliances like TVs, set-top boxes, and stereo systems with a compatible app.esti eye case c134ef7d3e60f3f6314e338de1db42d1 original

And the Eye runs Android 7.1 Nougat.

If that all sounds too good to be true, it very well might be. The startup behind the Eye, Israel-based ESTI, is a newcomer to the smartphone accessory business. That’s not a reason to dismiss the project out of hand, but certainly cause to be wary.

Even if the Eye delivers on its promises, though, it inherently involves compromises — at the end of the day, you’re slapping an Android phone on the back of your iPhone. NFC, IR, and a beefy external battery sound like great features in theory, but when you have to contend with the extra weight and bulk that come along with them, they’ll undoubtedly lose their luster.

If none of that dissuades you, the Eye starts $100 on Kickstarter (with an estimated later retail price of $190). It comes in black and white, and fits the iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6S, 6S Plus, 7, and 7 Plus.


OnePlus charges into U.K. carrier stores, leaving online-only start in the past

OnePlus's next phone, the OnePlus 6T, will be more widely available than any OnePlus phone before it, as the company has announced major deals with retailers in the U.K. The device launches on October 30.

Verizon's newest deals can net you $500 off the LG V40 ThinQ

Looking for a new LG flagship? The LG V40 ThinQ is here, and it's bringing a familiar style, two more camera lenses, and upgraded specs. Here's absolutely everything you need to know about the LG V40 ThinQ.
Android Army

With the E5's arrival, Moto's entire E-range lineup unites in the U.S.

Struggling to figure out your E5 from your G6? No, it's not a weird chromatic scale -- it's just Motorola's new roster. But how do you know which is right for you? Find out with our guide to Motorola's 2018 phone lineup.

The best iPhone deals for October 2018

Apple devices can get expensive, but if you just can't live without iOS, don't despair: We've curated an up-to-date list of all of the absolute best iPhone deals available for September 2018.

Pixel 3 XL vs. iPhone XS Max: Which plus-sized flagship reigns supreme?

The Google Pixel 3 XL is finally here, boasting improved performance, a new design, and more. But can it take out the other super-sized phone that recently came out, the Apple iPhone XS Max?
Emerging Tech

Here’s all the best gear and gadgetry you can snag for $100 or less

A $100 bill can get you further than you might think -- so long as you know where to look. Check out our picks for the best tech under $100, whether you're in the market for headphones or a virtual-reality headset.
Product Review

The all-new Palm wants to be many things, but it’s really just a tiny smartphone

The all-new Palm is here, and it’s tinier than ever. Exclusive to Verizon, it syncs to your primary smartphone and acts as a secondary device -- with features to help you disconnect from technology. But at $350, is it worth the high price…

The Palm has been revived, and it wants to help you limit your smartphone usage

A reboot of the classic Palm is finally here and it's tiny. It syncs to your phone and acts as a secondary device -- with a feature to help you disconnect from technology. At $350, the Palm will be available exclusively through Verizon.

You can finally throw away your PC; Photoshop is coming to the iPad

A full version of Photoshop is coming to the iPad -- and soon, other tablets, as well. Adobe also launched several new features for Photoshop and Lightroom, including a new Content-Aware Fill tool.

The Huawei Mate 20 may come with a massive 40W charger

Huawei is no stranger when it comes to big phones. And this year it plans to go even bigger with the Huawei Mate 20 and Mate 20 Pro. Here's what we think we know about the new range.
Home Theater

Dish Network or DirecTV: Which is the better choice for you?

So, you’ve chosen to go with a satellite television provider. Check out our quick rundown of what both Dish Network and DirecTV offer in terms of content, hardware, and pricing, and why you might choose them over streaming services.

Upcoming iPad may lose a few millimeters, along with its headphone jack

The new iPhone XS, iPhone XR, and Apple Watch aren't the last devices we'll see from Apple in 2018. There are plenty of rumors about a new iPad coming this year too, and it may share some design similarities with the new phones.
Product Review

Mediocre battery and a big notch slight Google's otherwise perfect Pixel phone

Google’s Pixel 3 XL has two big flaws: The gigantic notch on the front, and mediocre battery life. That being said, this is the best Android experience you can find in a smartphone today.
Product Review

Google’s Pixel 3 is a hair away from pocket-sized perfection

Google’s Pixel 3 smartphone is the best Android phone you can buy. It doesn’t have the best looks or the best hardware, but you’ll be hard pressed to find better software and unique A.I. functionalities.