The 7 Best Otterbox Cases of 2021

Make sure your phone is protected at all times

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Finding the best Otterbox cases is easy. Otterbox is one of the biggest names in smartphone cases. It has built its reputation on making the toughest most durable cases around that will protect your smartphone from just about anything. Otterbox has a number of different lines of cases which it calls "series." The cases will work with iPhone and many popular Android smartphones, as well.

In our list, we have linked to some of the more popular series of cases that Otterbox produces, but it's important to remember that our links are examples of the cases only. You will likely need to search for the case that is built for your specific phone.

If you want to keep your phone safe from harm, whether it's water, scratches, drops, dings, or falls, we have a case for you in this list. It's important to consider how you use your phone and in what environments you find yourself using it.

The Rundown
The workhorse of the OtterBox lineup…a nice balance of protection and good looks.
A thinner option that will easily fit inside your pocket and not take up too much space.
A three-layer protective case that will keep your smartphone safe from falls and shocks.
Comes with a leather finish to add a stylish look to your iPhone X.
Thin and tough, this series of device cases makes extreme functionality look stylish.
If you’re looking for the most stylish OtterBox, the Statement Series is what you’re looking for.
Best for One-Handed Use:
OtterBox Figura Series at Walmart
The Figura Series was designed with one-handed users in mind,

Best Overall: OtterBox Commuter Series

OtterBox Commuter Series
What We Like
  • Dual-layered protection

  • Ports are protected

What We Don't Like
  • Scratch prone


The Otterbox Commuter series is exactly what it sounds like. It's a case for phones of commuters and everyday pedestrians, and, as such, needs to withstand drops, as well as getting tossed into a bag or stuck out in the rain. That's exactly what this case is built for.

You've got dual-layered protection, with a soft TPU cover on the inside and a hard polycarbonate shell on the outside. This dual layer protects from scratches and drops. Unfortunately, the polycarbonate shell, itself, is easily scratched, so this case might start to look a little worse for wear after some time. That's better than your phone getting scratched, of course.  

Rounding out the protection, this case covers all of your ports with easily removable flaps. These will keep out water if you get caught outside in foul weather. You can flip them open when you need to plug in.  You never can have too much protection, and the Commuter series is a great way to keep your phone safe.

Best Budget: OtterBox Symmetry Series Case

 

What We Like
  • Clear option shows off your phone

  • Slim design

  • Affordable

What We Don't Like
  • Not as protective as otters in the list

The Otterbox Symmetry series case is a great choice for folks who aren't too rough on their phones. This is a single layer of TPU, which is very slim and much more affordable. There's also a clear option, and we are suckers for clear cases here at Lifewire. A clear case lets you show off your phone's design while still keeping it safe.

Since this is a slimmer, single layer of protection, this won't be as heavy duty as the others on this list.  This case is designed more for people who aren't too rough on their phones, but still want to keep them pristine. This case allows you to easily slip your phone into a pocket or a small bag, so if you're a more on-the-go kind of person, this might suit you.

Best Rugged: OtterBox Defender Series

OtterBox Defender Series SCREENLESS Edition Case for Samsung Galaxy Note9 - Retail Packaging - Dark Lake (Chinchilla/Dress Blues)
What We Like
  • Comes with a belt clip

  • Serious protection

What We Don't Like
  • Very bulky

The Otterbox series is very well named, because this series also lives up to its namesake.  The Defender series is built to defend your phone from all manner of drops, bumps, and scrapes. It just looks tough. You get a dual layer of protection here, but the outside polycarbonate layer is thick and tough. All of your ports are protected, as well, with covers that easily slip open when needed.

The phone case comes with a belt clip, which should give you an idea of who this case is meant for. It's meant for tough situations with people who keep things on their belts, such as construction workers and others who spend a lot of time outdoors. We can't guarantee that an Otterbox Defender will stand up to anything you throw at it (or anything you throw your phone at), but it will make a good effort.

Best Folio: OtterBox Strada Series

What We Like
  • Cover protects the screen

  • Elegant design

  • Card holder

What We Don't Like
  • Case flap can block camera

  • Buttons can be hard to find

If you don't mind placing your eggs in one basket, the Otterbox Strada case might be for you.  This is a folio case made with leather for an elegant look and feel. Even better, the folio wraps all the way around your phone, giving you 360 degrees of protection. As an added bonus, the cover flap has a card holder for an ID or credit card, meaning you can leave your wallet at home for a night out.

The folio cover is perfect for someone who wants to consolidate all their items into one device. Leaving your wallet at home can be freeing. Depending on your phone, folding the front flap around to the back might block your camera, so if you want to take shots with your phone, it may hang awkwardly while doing so.  It's a small price to pay for this great looking and great feeling case that keeps your phone safe. 

Best Design: Otterbox Pursuit Series Case

Otter Box iPhone X Pursuit Series Case
What We Like
  • Clear screen protector built in

  • Thin protection

What We Don't Like
  • Hard to assemble

  • Buttons hard to use

Dual-sided cases are popular these days because they provide all around protection. The Otterbox Pursuit series has a built-in screen protector on the front that protects your screen, as well as your phone's body. This is a relatively thin layer of plastic, so it won't survive being dragged across gravel, but if you accidentally drop your phone into your pocket with your keys, you'll be thankful you got this case.

The case goes together by putting the front of the cover on your phone first. You then work the back on, moving around the sides until a seal is formed. It can be tricky getting that seal just right, but a little patience goes a long way. Plus, if the case is not seated properly, it can be tough to press the buttons on the phone. But, this gives you front and back protection in a slim case, so overall it's a win.

Best Style: OtterBox Statement Series

What We Like
  • Stylish, leather accents

  • Raised lip around the front protects the screen

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive for what it is

The Otterbox Statement series is for people who want to make a statement.  It's a minimal case with a single layer of protection, but, like the Symmetry case above, it has a see-through element that allows you to enjoy your phone's design. The side rails still carry an accent color, as does leather on the back, all of which can add more style to your phone.

It's a little expensive, considering the minimal protection it provides. You're paying more for the look than the protection.  Still, the raised edge around the periphery of the phone gives the screen some extra protection in drops and falls, which is nice. Overall, this case is for people who care about style more than protection, but still want some protection.

Best for One-Handed Use: OtterBox Figura Series

OtterBox Figura Series
What We Like
  • Thin bumper case

What We Don't Like
  • Exclusive to Apple

The Otterbox Figura series is an Apple exclusive limited to iPhones. These are TPU bumper cases designed for Apple's phones that add a lot of style and protection to your iPhone. Styles range from different colored patterns to various textures on the back, all of which can give your iPhone a sense of standing out against the crowd. In an age where seemingly everyone has the same phone, the Figura series helps you stand out.

The Figura series carries Otterbox's protection and drop guarantees, while not adding bulk to your phone. You can get it for any iPhone starting with the X series and continuing up through today. Otterbox even made some MagSafe compatible cases, which work with Apple's latest wireless charging tech.

Final Verdict

Overall, the Commuter series is our favorite here at Lifewire. It offers a lot of protection without adding a lot of bulk to the phone. The dual-layers of protection help keep your phone safe from drops, scrapes, and scratches, while keeping a sharp slim look to your phone.


Otherwise, we're suckers for the clear cases. Otterbox's Symmetry series has just such an option, and we love it. Your phone's manufacturer put a lot of time and thought into the development of your phone's design. To cover it up with plastic just seems wrong somehow, so the Symmetry series is a great solution to that.

About Our Trusted Experts

Adam S. Doud has been writing in the tech space for almost ten years. During that time he's carried dozens of phones and every one of them has had a case.

FAQs

What is the difference between TPU and polycarbonate?
TPU stands for thermoplastic polyurethane, and it's a sort of rubber material used in soft cases. Polycarbonate is a much more rigid plastic. Both protect your phone against drops, spills, and impacts. Polycarbonate's rigid structure resists the energy of a fall, while TPU's pliable nature allows the case to absorb the energy. They both do the job in different ways.


How durable a phone case do I need?

It depends a lot on where you take your phone. If you work in an outdoors area or a place where phones could suffer falls or strong impacts, then a heavier-duty case is a great idea. If you are more indoors or want to keep your phone in a pocket or small bag, then a slimmer case is better for you.


How long can a case last?

Cases should last the life of your phone. That's what they're designed to do. If you find your phone case getting worn very quickly, a more durable case may be for you. Most cases will show some wear and tear after a time, but that's what they're supposed to do. They take the scratches and falls so your phone doesn't have to.

What to Look for in an Otterbox Case

Durability

At the end of the day, you need a phone case that will keep up with your lifestyle. So it's important to keep in mind what you'll be doing with your phone. Many cases offer multiple layers of protection. More layers keep your phone safer, but they also add bulk.

Function

When shopping for cases, keep an eye out for little features like port covers. Those help keep moisture out of your phone and help keep it safer. Some cases have screen protectors built in or come with a screen protector. That's a nice bonus.

Extras

Some cases have card holders. Others have belt clips. Still others have kickstands. In addition to keeping your phone safe, a case should add to what your phone brings. Those extras can make all the difference.

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