Lifeproof Fre lets you to take your iPhone 6/6s anywhere, even underwater

For a lot of us, our smartphone is an indispensable tool that goes with us everywhere. It makes sense that you’d want your phone to be able to survive anything, including accidental drops, snowboarding wipe-outs, and a dip in the pool. To get the most protection for the iPhone 6/6s, consider the Lifeproof Fre, which promises to deliver superior water, dirt, snow, and drop protection.

The Fre case is a two-piece, hard shell with edges that are wrapped in a plastic bumper for shock absorption and drop protection. Between the two halves of the case, there is a rubber O-ring seal where they meet on the inside, creating a dust and liquid barrier. A built-in, plastic screen protector and raised lip around the screen protects the glass from dirt and scratches, while the home button is covered with a slightly thinner, flexible film that allows you to use the fingerprint sensor without interference. The screen protector is flat and smooth, though it slightly diminishes the visible resolution. However, this does not impact functionality, and it remains fully compatible with all the touch capabilities of your phone including Touch ID and 3D Touch.

The buttons on the sides of the phone like volume, mute, and sleep are fully encased but usable via pass-through raised rubber buttons. For the headphone port, you’ll find a screw-in cap protecting it from dust and liquids. When that cover is opened, it’s tethered to the case, so you can’t lose it. Each case comes with a gold-plated, threaded headphone jack extender, enabling you to use waterproof headphones and keep your phone watertight at the same time. A snap cover with a rubber seal provides similar protection for the charging port. However, the opening for the Lightning connector is precision cut to the OEM cable from Apple, so if you’re using a third-party cable for charging, there’s a chance the connector may not fit the cutout under the cover.

Both the headphone and charging port covers must be tightly sealed in order for the case to be waterproof, and Lifeproof insists on testing this feature sans phone before you attempt to use the case in water. In our test, the empty case performed perfectly with no leaks when submerged for an hour in a bucket of water, though the Fre purportedly can handle up to an hour at a depth of 6.6 feet. One unavoidable impact of having your phone fully enclosed is that the sound transmission both from the speakers and to the microphone are somewhat dampened. At the expense of waterproofing, you may find yourself talking a little bit louder than you’re used to.

Opening the case by hand can be tough, which isn’t surprising for a case designed to be impenetrable. The user manual recommends twisting a coin in the separator notch to pry the corner up. Just make sure the cover for the charging port is open when you do this, or it will prevent you from separating the two halves. Once you get your phone seated inside and the case closed up again, you’ll notice that the extra weight and bulk isn’t all that bad. The case roughly doubles the thickness of the slim iPhone 6 and adds just over an ounce to its weight. It’s slightly smaller than the comparable non-waterproof Otterbox Defender case but is still built like a tank. Its utilitarian style can appear a bit plain when compared to the sleek metal finishes of the iPhone 6, but thankfully, the Fre has nine different colors to choose from including three graphics from its Realtree Collection.

While no case can guarantee that your phone will never break, the Lifeproof Fre has the most common hazards and weather conditions covered for maximum protection. With it, you’re truly free to take your phone wherever you go. Yes, even in the shower.

Buy on Amazon


Huawei's folding phone held back for more tests, will be released in September

The Huawei Mate X is an exciting 5G folding smartphone with stunning looks. The Mate X has three screens, a clever hinge system, and a Leica camera. All the details you need to know are right here.

These are the best Pixel 3a XL cases and covers to protect your Google phone

If you want to change up the look or feel of your new Google phone, you want some decent drop protection, or both, then we have you covered with this list of the best Google Pixel 3a XL cases and covers.

Safeguard your new Apple smartphone with one of our favorite iPhone XS cases

If the iPhone XS is your next device, then you’ll want to shop for some proper protection now. That glass sandwich design is all too easy to scratch or crack, so make sure you snag one of the best iPhone XS cases to keep it looking good.

Protect your new smartphone with one of our favorite iPhone XR cases

Apple's new iPhone range was the toast of 2018, with beautiful style and more power than you can shake a stick at. But beauty can often be fragile -- keep the damage to a minimum with the best iPhone XR cases.

Protect your iPhone 6 from spills and splashes with the best waterproof cases

Apple didn’t make the iPhone 6/6S or 6/6S Plus waterproof. They aren’t even water-resistant. But you can always pick up a case that is. We take a look at the best water resistant and waterproof iPhone 6 cases on the market.

You can pre-order the Galaxy S10 5G from Sprint starting today

Samsung announced a whopping four new Galaxy S10 devices, from the low-cost S10e to the triple-camera S10 and S10 Plus. But it's the Galaxy S10 5G that steals the show, as it's the first 5G-ready smartphone to hit the market.

5 features I’d like to see in Google’s Pixel 4 smartphone

We’ve had a sneak peek at Google’s forthcoming Pixel 4 smartphone, and it offers few clues about what we’ll get. These are the 5 features I’d like to see Google include to take the Pixel line to the next level.

These are the best Moto Z4 cases to boost your new phone’s longevity

The Moto Z4 is the newest way to experience Motorola's flagship range. But just because it's cheap, doesn't mean that it's expendable. Make sure your new and beautiful Moto Z4 survives for a long time with one of the best Moto Z4 cases.

Pixel 4 gets spotted in real world, showing not even Google can stop the leaks

Rumors abound about the Google Pixel 4, Google's next Pixel phone following the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3a. Getting around the leaks, Google straight-up teased an image of the back of the phone. Here's what you need to know.
Home Theater

Diagnose and fix some common Apple AirPods problems with our handy guide

Apple’s AirPods are among the best fully wireless earbuds we’ve seen, but they’re not perfect. If you’re having trouble, take a look at our guide to the most common problems and what you can do to fix them.

Fitbit Versa and Samsung Gear fitness smartwatches get big Amazon price cuts

Some of the best options can get pretty pricey, but with smartwatch discounts on the Fitbit Versa and Samsung Gear Sport, they are really quite affordable right now. You can save up to $125 on a new fitness watch.

Huawei’s lock screen ads were a mistake, but may be a sign of things to come

Ads were placed on the lock screen of Huawei device owners yesterday, causing outcry on forums and social media. Huawei initially said it wasn't responsible, but that's no longer the case. Here's what happened.

The best Amazon Prime Day 2019 deals: Leaked date and what you need to know

Amazon Prime Day 2019 is still a month away, but it's never too early to start preparing. We've been taking a look at the best discounts from previous Prime Days to give you our predictions of what to expect this year.

Tapped out? Edit faster with 5 gesture shortcuts in Lightroom CC on mobile

Missing those keyboard shortcuts when photo editing on a smartphone or iPad? Lightroom has a handful of gesture-based controls that can help fill the gaps, if you know where to find them.