Catalyst, an aftermarket iPhone case manufacturer, wants to waterproof your watch. The company’s new protective cover for the Apple Watch, supposedly the first of its kind, went on sale earlier this year, and was on full display at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show on Tuesday.
Catalyst’s Apple Watch case may not tickle everyone’s fancy — after all, the watertight sealing results in a bulkier build than is common with most sleeves — but it’s relatively minimalist nonetheless. The silicon case manages to encase the Apple Watch’s sides, lugs, straps, and even the power button and digital crown. Plastic extensions allow you to use the buttons unencumbered, too, but the case doesn’t cover the display or rear and leaves the charging surface and hear rate sensor left exposed.
That doesn’t mean Catalyst’s case will enable you to actually use the Apple Watch’s touchscreen underwater, mainly because capacitive displays don’t work at depth. Instead, it’ll let you swim a few laps without worry, or take a shower without having to remove your watch. Snorkeling isn’t out of the question, either given the case is rated waterproof at 5 atmospheres of pressure, or up to 165 feet. Company Chief Josh Wright said that the Apple Watch itself begins to malfunction at 2 atmospheres, though, at least in Catalyst’s testing.
The case is also dust- and shock- proof, thus allowing it to withstand drops from up to 3 feet. It comes in a number of color combinations as well, including a white version with green accents, a grey iteration with white accents, and all-black model. It’s only compatible with the 42-millimeter Apple Watch for now, and currently retails for $60 on the company’s website.
There’s an argument to be made against submerging your Apple Watch even if it is protected by heavy-duty casing, but if you desperately want to take a dip while wearing your Apple Watch and don’t mind voiding your warrant, Catalyst’s case is worth a look.
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